Pommy politicians are the best troughers in the world. Check out Ed Balls gold medal troughing effort:
Ed Balls’ ministerial office spent thousands of pounds of taxpayers’ money on fine-dining at smart hotels and restaurants, £150-worth of takeaways from Domino’s pizza and shopping at department store chain John Lewis.
Spending on Mr Balls’ office credit card has been released covering the period when he was Schools secretary from 28 June 2007 to 11 May 2010.
The lavish spending has echoes of the credit card bill run by the private office of Lord Prescott when he was deputy Prime Minister.
The details of the spending on the government procurement card were released following a Freedom of Information request from Tom Watson MP, the Labour party’s deputy chairman.
Mr Watson had asked for the spending for the past two years – covering Michael Gove’s time as education secretary – however the Coalition decided to release credit card spending figures going back to April 2006.
In all the disclosures showed that Mr Balls’ office spent around £9,000 during his three years in office, with most of the cash going on travel receipts.
However Mr Ball’s staff also charged a £1,480 jaunt to New York, comprising more than £600 at the sumptuous Benjamin Hotel in Manhattan. The 90-year old hotel boasts on its website how it “remains a beloved Midtown fixture that continues to exude modern elegance.
“The luxury boutique-styled hotel excels at providing the personal attention of a neighbourhood park avenue club to ensure its guests make the most of every New York minute.”
Its guests are treated to an “in-room sleep menu, dedicated Sleep Concierge, Egyptian linens by Anichini and 12-Choice Pillow selection are just a few of our sleep strategies for helping you make the most of your six to eight hours of rest”.
The New York trip, for three nights in April 2009, also included a bill for more than £820 to eat at the 200-seat Bar Americain, Typical dishes include Shrimp-Tomatillo, Crab-Coconut and Lobster-Avocado Shellfish Cocktails.
The receipts for spending on the Government Procurement Card also include a couple of orders from Domino’s Pizza, totalling over £150, in December 2008, as well a single meal costing £450 at the Cinnamon Club, an upmarket Indian restaurant.
Other sums include £165 on two occasions at John Lewis, and £420 at La Maison du Cygne, a restaurant in Brussels.
This is the same play that happened here…can’t believe the tools fell for it. Check out this for a sledge too.
Bob Neill MP, a vice chairman of the Conservative party, added: “Not only did the Labour Party max out the nation’s credit card and leave a toxic legacy of debt, but Ed Balls and Labour Ministers turned a blind eye while their staff went on a spending spree with government procurement cards.