What about all those dual mandates?

Given the Ulster Unionists only have one MP and she doesn’t sit in the NOrthern Ireland Assembly, they clearly think they are on solid ground when they call attention to the large number of double salaries going to Northern Irish public representatives. Rod McCune of the Westminster Unionist Association lays out the argument:

“There is a serious ongoing problem with dual mandate politicians. In Scotland we have Alex Salmond MP MSP trying to do two jobs and actively seeking a third as First Minister. And although in Wales David Davies MP has just stood down from the Welsh Assembly, in Northern Ireland sixteen MPs are also in the Assembly, a number of those having recently pocketed ministerial positions.”

“These politicians may not believe it, but they aren’t superhuman and just like anyone else they cannot be in two places at once. What employer in the real world would accept a full-time employee who can’t go to their place of work because they are busy working elsewhere? We all know the answer, absolutely none.”

“The system relies on the decency of politicians not to exploit it, but many have been seriously found wanting. By their actions they contribute significantly to the public’s low opinion of politicians. The only solution is legislation that bans the second salary and allowances, we’ll see how many of these fat cat politicians take second job when they won’t receive an extra penny.”

“The Westminster Unionist Association will lobby the Government, political parties and individual politicians to support a campaign to ban dual mandates. We are already pursuing a number of options including a private member’s Bill to put this issue firmly on the agenda and get it resolving once and for all.”

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty