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Parliament set to make another costly mistake?


Parliament’s election of a new Speaker is supposed to solve a lot of the woes it has brought upon itself by the expenses scandal. But it won’t, newspaper editorials predict.

The House of Commons needs to appoint somebody who can restore the integrity of the chamber and public trust after many MPs were found to be claiming for lavish and sometimes inappropriate expenses.

Instead Westminster in its search for a replacement for Michael Martin has resorted to old fashioned “unparalleled cynicism” and “horse trading”, the papers say.

The media’s favoured choice, former Conservative minister Ann Widdecombe, looks set to be overlooked to preserve vested interests, they believe.

Thursday’s front pages


guardian1505.jpg THE GUARDIAN: Recession alert as Brown fights back

Gordon Brown’s drive to recapture the political agenda with a programme of new laws to create “an opportunity-rich Britain” was badly shaken yesterday by King’s warning.

“The nice decade is behind us,” Mervyn King declared in funereal tones, warning that the economy was “travelling along a bumpy road” as he predicted rising prices would put a squeeze on take-home pay for millions of workers.