After the campaign & then the results it seems like then you’re kind of guides but also not.
Councillors become Councillors within days of the results & the same for those going into Parliament or the Assemblies. This isn’t so for MEP’s.
MEP’s are elected in a whirlwind of Televisual results from almost every news channel or public service broadcasts which go on into the very small hours & often close to dawn!
The new MEP’s are allowed to use their new title but that’s where it stops. No pay, no expenses, no offices, no staff etc etc!
This would & has come as a shock to a good many elected MEP’s and their families. This is where the non elected spouse really comes in to the fray! They are the ones organising travel to the travelling circus of Belgium or Strasbourg and back again. Sorting hotels and learning about the local area via the help (or quite frustratingly the hinderance) of Google maps.
When you have never been there, you don’t really know the closest train stations or well anything. It’s one heck of a learning curve which takes a novice a very long time! All the while the elected spouse is out & about giving interviews, going to public events, other meetings, arranging all of the things you’d never expect would have to be done & take hours to sort!
The MEP’s are not official until the 1st July and basically are self funding from Election Day until the end of July. The credit cards take a massive bashing, the bank accounts get deeper into the red & you know it’s going to take a good 6 to 12 months to pay off all the borrowing.
The travel, hotels, food etc etc, are paid for by the MEP (and their family) so when you hear about MEP’s who have been voted out or not even selected to stand in the election going off on a £30,000 “junket/Taxpayer funded holiday” it really irks somewhat.
Why on earth is this acceptable? The newly elected MEP’s are now doing the job, have likely been to Brussels a few times before the official start date in Strasbourg are robbing Peter to pay Paul because the others are having one last taxpayers funded holiday!
So there you have it, remember when you hear all sorts of stuff about new MEP’s doing this that or the other remember THEY ARE PAYING THEIR OWN WAY! They are not officially on staff, being paid or anything until the 1st of July.
Please share so people know the real facts – thank you