The new expenses watchdog trampled over public opinion yesterday by allowing MPs to continue employing their wives and children.
The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority announced that MPs' expenses would be slashed by up to £16,000 after the General Election.
But the authority was accused of undermining public trust in the new scheme by allowing relatives to continue cashing in at taxpayers' expense.
Some 59 per cent of the public who responded to a consultation on the rules opposed the employment of MPs' wives, with only 22 per cent in favour.
But IPSA chief Sir Ian Kennedy dismissed the concerns, admitting he had put the 'quality of the argument' advanced by grasping MPs before those who warned about 'the possibility of abuse'.*
*Translation, we consulted you but you can fuck the fuck off if you think we are going to listen to you smelly plebs.
The IPSA also risked widespread criticism by watering down proposals to force MPs to hand back capital gains made on taxpayer-funded second homes.
A report by Sir Christopher Kelly, the Commissioner on Standards in Public Life, had called for the clawback to be retrospective and begin last November.
But the IPSA ruled that only gains made after August 2010 will be seized, effectively giving MPs a window of opportunity to sell their homes and cash in before the clawback begins.
The decision to allow MPs to employ family members was met with dismay by Sir Christopher, who had originally called for the ban, and Commons Speaker John Bercow, who had publicly endorsed a prohibition on wives.
Vote them all out, time to clean house and start again.