Monday, 20 February 2012
Tory MP "Forgets" He's Paid By Healthcare Company.
Tory MP and ministerial aide Mark Simmonds, pictured above, has been forced to apologise for his "inadvertant" failure to declare his interest in the healthcare company Circle when supporting the NHS Reform Bill. Mr.Simmonds, who in common with many MP's seems to think that his seat in Parliament is of secondary interest to his real job, forgot all about the £50,000 a year he gets from Circle as a "strategic adviser" while arguing in favour of Andrew Lansley's bid to privatisatise the NHS. "It's very difficult to remember what extra jobs you've got when you're an MP or where all the money comes from," he told our reporter. "You can't expect me to remember every measly £50,000 some company slips me to influence policy - its just not realistic. Holding five or six jobs down at a time, even when all you have to do is hold your hand out, is very taxing. Obviously I don't mean paying tax - I gave that up years ago - I mean its very difficult and stressful. Some days I don't know which offshore bank to phone next. Anyway I've apologised for being a crook and that should be enough - in fact I'm confident it will be. There are no crooks in parliament, just public spirit servants of the state who happen to get paid for doing very, very little. We should be commended for our ingenuity and business acumen."