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Pots and kettles
Frontline article by Patrick Ward, June 2009
Voters in the European elections were urged to punish the "greedy Labour, Conservative and Lib Dem MPs" by UK Independence Party (UKIP) leader Nigel Farage. Perhaps they will. But Farage's message might have come across a little better had he not admitted during his election campaign that he was claiming vast sums of money himself.
Asked at a meeting of the Foreign Press Association how much he had claimed since becoming an MEP in 1999, Farage (annual salary: £64,000) replied, "It's a vast sumů I don't know what the total amount is but - oh lor - it must be pushing £2 million."
Unabashed, UKIP later released election material claiming that Westminster MPs had "ripped off taxpayers".
The party leader - who employs his wife to work in his office out of his taxpayer-funded allowance - said that he was "entirely happy that the money had been used for the best causes".
These "best causes" include pushing the UKIP message that EU membership is a vast waste of public money. Well, he should know.
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