On Thursday night I was, as chance would have it, speaking at a Somali week event in Bethnal Green, George Galloway's constituency. I arrived back in Bristol afterwards to catch the man himself on Question Time, having a go at Tony Blair for something he'd said in a 'highly-remunerated' speech in the States (or something to that effect). It was then pointed out to him that Tony Blair hadn't in fact been paid for the speech in question.
Is this the same George Galloway who records in the Register of Members Interests being paid for "a series of 15 events organised by Clive Conway Ltd" (£10,001-£15,000); hosting a show on Talk Radio (£100,001-£105,000), fees for appearing on "Don't Call me Stupid" (£10,001-£15,000) and for hosting "Big Brother's Big Mouth" (£35,001-£40,000), a weekly column in the Daily Record (£25,001-£30,000), as well as expenses for overseas speaking tours in Canada and South Africa and shareholdings in Finjan Ltd, a company established to receive his income as a journalist, author and public speaker? Oh, and he's also been paid advances on three books, and received between £145,001-£150,000 for appearing in Celebrity Big Brother.
The same George Galloway, according to www.theyworkforyou.com, spoke 6 times in debates in Parliament over the last year (which includes asking parliamentary questions) and voted in only 12% of divisions. He spent only £259 on centrally-purchased stationery (617th out of 645 MPs) and £163 on postage (634th) - which works out at about a dozen letters a week to, or on behalf of, his constituents. But maybe he uses his substantial income to buy his own stamps?