Snigger, Oh, Tee Hee

Of course Guido has been going on about this all month but nice to see it hitting the mainstream:

Senior officials in the Labour party, including Gordon Brown, could become personally liable for millions of pounds in debt unless new donors can be found within weeks, the Guardian has learned.

The party has five weeks to find £7.45m to pay off loans to banks and wealthy donors recruited by Lord Levy, Tony Blair\’s former chief fundraiser, or become insolvent. A further £6.2m will have to be repaid by Christmas – making £13.65m in all. The sum amounts to two-thirds of the party\’s annual income from donations.

The figures are a conservative estimate as they do not include interest that will also have to be paid. A Labour source said that although the total debt was listed as £17.8m on the Electoral Commission website, the true level, with interest, was nearer to £24m.

The possibility that party officials and members of its national executive committee could become liable is being taken seriously by union leaders, and has been underlined by the decision of equity fund chairman David Pitt-Watson not to accept the post as Labour\’s general secretary.

Though he was Brown\’s candidate for the post, he declined the offer after receiving independent legal advice that he would be personally liable for repaying the loans and could be bankrupted if Labour\’s finances collapsed.

The advice from City solicitors Slaughter and May said unequivocally that leading party officials and members of the NEC would be " jointly and severally" responsible for the party\’s debt.

Couldn\’t happen to a nicer group of people now, could it?

Of course, this is simply going to increase the pressure for State funding of political parties but there\’s a logical, if robust, response to that.

Why should we have to pay for a bunch of bankrupts?

8 thoughts on “Snigger, Oh, Tee Hee”

  1. More than that: Don’t bankrupts automatically have to stand down as MPs?

    Tim adds: Oooooh! Yes! I’d forgotten that. And you can’t come back when discharged, either.

  2. More to the point… That shower of economically-illiterate f*ckers are running the country!

    … for the time being.

  3. So Much For Subtlety

    I don’t understand Guido’s enthusiasm for this. And I seem to remember him going on about this last year as well – perhaps even this time last year. After all the little bastards have the keys to our bank accounts. They are more or less unaccountable. And they have a massive sense of entitlement. Surely any eight year old can see this is going to end with a raid on our piggy banks, not in their’s?

  4. Tony Blair’s greatest achievement: halving the Labour Party membership within ten years and helping to bankrupt it.

    But I think So Much For Subtlety is right – I fear that Hayden Phillips’ words, “the public interest in financially healthy political parties, and what parties can do in the public interest”*, will come back to haunt us.

    * Sadly he didn’t mention that there is a public interest in financially competent parties…

  5. Pingback: oh well « UK Liberty

  6. I note they are scrambling to change their status to that of a Limited Liability company, but could be required to clear their outstanding debts first.

  7. The thought that Labour will simply raid the taxpayer’s coffers to pay their own debts is worrying, but not the worst possible outcome. It looks like the Labour Party, and by extension the UK government, is now for sale to anyone with a spare 24M, which isn’t that much these days. Who will buy it? An eevil multinational company, some unpleasant foreign government, a Soros-style dodgy billionaire? Let your imagination run wild.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *