Mixed verdict on expenses-hit candidates
Saturday 08 May 2010
Jacqui Smith was close to tears but Hazel Blears wore a quiet smile of relief. In the contrasting fates of these former ministers, the electorate's final judgement on the expenses scandal proved every bit as unpredictable as the campaign.
Redditch took the chance to punish the former Home Secretary, Ms Smith, with relish. Her "unreserved" apology after claiming for her husband's pay-per-view porn – and benefiting by £116,000 through classifying her main home as a second property – held little sway.
Yet Ms Blears, pictured, was spared by the people of Salford despite searing anger last year at her capital gains tax avoidance. The former Secretary for Communities and Local Government was helped by disenchanted Labour supporters switching to the Liberal Democrats – who registered a 9.43 per cent swing – instead of the Conservatives.
Yvette Cooper was also let off the hook despite her "flipping" of homes. Another former minister Tony McNulty was not so lucky.
Labour saw off Esther Rantzen to keep Margaret Moran's old seat of Luton South. Meanwhile, the Tories held the old seats of Douglas Hogg, who claimed for moat-cleaning, and Sir Peter Viggers of duck-island fame.
- 5 How the language you speak changes your view of the world
Lucy Hawking: Stephen Hawking's daughter writes impassioned open letter to Katie Hopkins about rights of disabled people
Indonesia executions: Death row British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford will refuse to wear a blindfold when she faces firing squad
Oxygen-starved 'dead zones' with no marine life up to 100-miles long discovered in the Atlantic Ocean
How the language you speak changes your view of the world
Russian warships accused of 'chasing away' Swedish vessel to prevent Baltic States from achieving energy independence
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: SNP and its activists 'openly racist' towards the English, Farage says
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
£28000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Digital Marketing Cons...
£16640 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Assistant Stores Keeper is r...
£16000 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an excellent opportunit...
£17000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Developer required to join a bu...