Both the former Labour MP Tony McNulty and the present Culture Secretary Maria Miller claimed parliamentary second home expenses for houses in which their respective parents lived. This is in contravention of accepted procedure.  McNulty apologised, paid the money back, resigned his cabinet position and his seat. Maria Miller is somehow still the Culture Secretary and has the Prime Minister’s “full support”, as well as a still agreeably full bank account: she has paid back nowt. The only difference I can see between the two cases is that McNulty claimed £13,000 whereas Miller pocketed £90,000.  David Laws, meanwhile, is back in a quasi-cabinet role despite having diddled the taxpayer out of more than £40,000. The suspicion persists that when it comes to fiddling expenses, only the expendable MPs get the chop. The rest keep their jobs – and the money.

Tags: David Laws, Maria miller, MPs' expenses, Tony McNulty