MPs have earned £17.1m on high of their salaries on this parliament, with round two-thirds of the cash going to only 20 MPs.
As a part of Westminster Accounts, a joint challenge between Sky News and Tortoise Media to shine a light-weight on how cash works in politics, we discovered the vast majority of the additional earnings went to Tory politicians – a complete of £15.2m – whereas Labour MPs earned a further £1.2m.
All MPs are paid a base wage of £84,144.
Search to your MP utilizing the Westminster Accounts device
Transparency in politics typically feels prefer it falls brief – we need to shine a light-weight on that
Westminster Accounts: Following the cash
How to discover the database for your self
Former prime minister Theresa May obtained probably the most on the checklist, incomes £2,550,876 for the reason that session started in December 2019.
Meanwhile, Labour’s shadow international secretary David Lammy topped his occasion’s checklist with extra earnings of £202,599.
The debate over second jobs dominated 2021 after former Tory MP Owen Paterson grew to become embroiled in a lobbying scandal that finally led to his resignation.
Other high-profile circumstances of MPs staying throughout the guidelines however incomes hundreds for out of doors work emerged, and calls for for reform started to ring from all corners of the Commons.
Some modifications are attributable to come into impact later this yr, with MPs to be banned from taking up work as political or parliamentary consultants from March.
One supply concerned in drafting the brand new guidelines instructed this might affect the second jobs of round 30 MPs.
But they won’t forestall others from incomes vital quantities for speeches, TV appearances and authorized work.
As talked about, Mrs May has accrued probably the most up to now three years with a prolonged checklist of talking engagements.
Her single greatest pay cheque got here from Cambridge Speaker Series, who gave her £408,200 for six talks in California, in addition to flights and lodging for her and a member of workers.
Mrs May was in a position to earn £38,000 from MPSF for a chat she gave nearly.
Perhaps most notable, nonetheless, is the cash she obtained from the World Travel and Tourism Council for a speech she gave in November.
Her entry within the register of members’ pursuits makes no point out of the very fact this £107,600 speech was delivered in Saudi Arabia – a rustic she blocked ministers and officers from visiting for a interval whereas she was prime minister following the homicide of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Mrs May has mentioned the cash she earns goes into an organization known as the Office of Theresa May Limited, from which she pays herself a wage of £85,000 a yr. The remainder of the money, she says, goes to help her charitable work, although it isn’t recognized how a lot, and to pay for different actions as a former prime minister.
MPs aren’t required to make public their charitable donations, however Mrs May does perform in depth charitable work – together with for diabetes teams.
Despite repeated requests for remark about her earnings, no response has been obtained from Mrs May.
The subsequent highest paid MP for work exterior of parliament was Sir Geoffrey Cox, who totted up £2,191,387 from 9 totally different legislation corporations and an area Conservative affiliation.
There was controversy final yr when the previous lawyer common was discovered to have earned over £800,000 from the legislation agency Withers for his work on an inquiry into corruption within the British Virgin Islands.
His earnings from Withers have now risen to over £1.8m up to now three years.
In a press release, Sir Geoffrey mentioned: “A barrister retained to advise in a case is no more to be personally identified with the purposes and views of his client than a plumber with the views of his customer or a doctor with those of his patient.
“Therefore, there is no such thing as a battle of curiosity between my work as a barrister and my function as a member of parliament. On the opposite hand, I often put my expertise and understanding of the legislation on the service of my constituents in serving to them to resolve their particular person issues in my common recommendation surgical procedures.”
The former attorney general added: “Private apply as a barrister is definitely no extra time consuming and demanding than the function of lawyer common. If it’s potential to hold out the function of an MP whereas additionally the senior legislation officer, it’s definitely potential to take action whereas persevering with selective apply on the Bar.”
The third spot in the list of parliament’s biggest earners is taken by another former prime minister, Boris Johnson.
The Uxbridge MP has rocketed up the earnings rankings, declaring more than a million pounds in earnings since he stepped down from office last September.
Almost all of his declared earnings since the last election came from just four speeches in October and November last, one of which in New York was paid at a rate of around £32,500 per hour.
The fourth spot went to another Tory MP, Fiona Bruce, who earned £711,749 from her own law firm on top of her salary.
In a press release to Sky News, Ms Bruce mentioned: “Much of the sum declared is in fact tax paid directly to HMRC on my behalf which, to be scrupulously correct, I have declared though not personally received.”
She added: “Examination of my entries shows the limited hours I spend in the law firm; this limited time does not detract from my commitment to my constituents.”
Fellow Conservative Sir John Redwood got here in fifth, incomes £692,438 with the bulk coming from his “global strategist” function at funding agency Charles Stanley.
And sixth place is Foreign Office minister Andrew Mitchell with £464,232 – over £100,000 of which was paid from advising funding financial institution SouthBridge on “African matters”. Mr Mitchell’s earnings have been accrued whereas he was on the backbenches. He resigned from all his exterior pursuits when he returned to authorities in October.
Other notable names within the checklist embrace former chancellor Sajid Javid, who has earned £361,566 from advising banks on the worldwide economic system and giving speeches.
Conservative MP Sir Bill Wiggin has remodeled £250,000 as an asset supervisor – operating 4 funds, all based mostly within the tax havens of the Caymans and the island of Bermuda, whereas ex-transport secretary Chris Grayling, recognized for granting a £14m ferry contract to an organization with no ships, is now making £100,000 a yr advising a ports and delivery enterprise.
Only two Labour MPs made it into the highest 20 earners, one in every of which is David Lammy, who has declared earnings from greater than 40 totally different sources – probably the most of any MP on our checklist.
The shadow international secretary has listed not less than 30 talking and coaching engagements since December 2019, value round £100,000, in addition to greater than £87,000 for a radio programme on LBC.
Sky News approached each Mr Lammy and the Labour Party to ask whether or not his work would qualify as an “exemption” from Sir Keir Starmer’s deliberate ban on second jobs, however no response was obtained.
However, Mr Lammy has up to now made an impassioned defence of his work on his radio present, saying: “Why am I here? Why am I pleased to be here? One because I am the only black presenter on LBC. It’s important for my constituents – I love the fact they approach me and can hear me putting views that they agree with out there into the public.”
Jess Phillips is the one different Labour MP within the high 20, rating at quantity 19 with £162,838 of exterior earnings that come from a spread of locations – together with virtually £65,000 for an advance on a e book, £25,000 for showing on Have I Got News For You, and simply shy of £30,000 for columns within the Independent.
Outside earnings for the Liberal Democrats totalled £171,000 – however £159,758 of that has been earned by occasion chief, Sir Ed Davey, who’s the twenty first highest incomes MP.
He earns £5,000 a month as a political marketing consultant for Herbert Smith Freehills and £37,984 as an asset supervisor for photo voltaic initiatives.
Commenting on the Westminster Accounts findings on MPs’ earnings, Hannah White, director of the Institute for Government, mentioned the occasion affiliation of these receiving probably the most exterior earnings confirmed why reform has been gradual.
She informed Sky News: “When you look at the data, it is very clear that there is a party pattern to which MPs are getting outside earnings.”
“I think that points to one reason why there hasn’t been a big incentive to sort this out in this parliament.
“[It explains] why it has been the case that though parliament determined that it needed to place some restrictions on exterior earnings, actually the modifications which have been made are fairly minimal, and there isn’t any actual incentive on the ruling Conservative Party to push their MPs to vary one thing like that”.