The Culture Secretary Maria Miller is responsible for the implementation of the Levenson report and is currently having a round of discussions with editors of our national press and other interested parties.
She has also been accused of fiddling her parliamentary expenses by claiming mortgage costs on her parents' home with the result that she has been reported to the Parliamentary Commissioner for
Standards by the Labour MP John Mann.
What is of considerable concern is the apparent threats that were made by one of her aides against the Daily Telegraph and its reporter who was seeking to find out more about her parliamentary expenses, which is reported under the heading (See here).
"The minister and a warning to The Telegraph before expenses story".
Among other things, her special
adviser, Joanna Hindley said “Maria has obviously been having quite a lot of editors’ meetings around
Leveson at the moment. So I am just going to kind of flag up that connection
for you to think about,” Now, if this all goes pear shaped, I'm sure tha Maria Miller will claim that her special adviser was not authorised to make, and shouldn't have made, these comments, but if you believe that, you'll believe anything.
In this series of actions, Maria Miller has demonstrated in no uncertain terms why there should not be statutory control over the media. If she can issue, via her adviser, pseudo-threats prior to introducing legislation, what on earth would she be doing if she had statutory rights to interfere?
The Telegraph reported about her expenses (see here) under the heading
"MPs' expenses: Culture Secretary Maria Miller’s £90,000 claims for parents’ home"
Incidentally, Maria Miller is the MP for Basingstoke. My daughter lives in a village outside Basingstoke, and works in Holborn which is somewhat further from Waterloo Station than Westminster. She often has to start work at 6am, and on occasions often leaves in the late evening. She can manage to travel on a daily basis, and when she is on a late turn often has to take a taxi from Basingstoke as she has missed the last connecting train to her village. She can't claim expenses, and her salary is considerably less than Maria Miller's. If she can manage, why can't Maria Miller?