Conservative MP Sir Peter Bottomley has labelled his annual salary of £81,932 ‘really grim’ and has reportedly ‘demanded’ a pay rise of £20,000.
The longest-serving politician made the comments to New Statesman on the same day millions of people across the UK faced cuts to Universal Credit payments.
The 77-year-old said: “It’s desperately difficult for new MPs, I don’t know how they manage. It’s really grim.”
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The MP for Worthing West wants to see the salary for Members of Parliament brought in line with GPs.
Sir Bottomley explained: “I take the view that being an MP is the greatest honour you could have, but a general practitioner in politics ought to be paid roughly the same as a general practitioner in medicine.
“Doctors are paid far too little nowadays. But if they would get roughly £100,000 a year, the equivalent for an MP to get the same standard of living would be £110-£115,000 a year – it’s never the right time, but if your MP isn’t worth the money, it’s better to change the MP than to change the money.”
According to the Office of National Statistics, the average salary in the UK is approximately £31,461.
The same day as the MP made the controversial comments, the Department of Work and Pensions brought in a cut to the Universal Credit uplift, a move that will affect almost six million people by £1,000 a year.
The uplift was introduced to help those on benefits during the pandemic, but the government has removed it with the hope of encouraging people to go back to work.
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