British Spinners Queuing Up for Parliament

After a year in which numerous British politicians have resigned or been publicly embarrassed by revelations over expense claims, the major UK political parties are promising new faces for the next election. However, Marie Woolf notes that "more than 50 prospective candidates chosen by the main parties are already working as lobbyists and public relations executives and are deeply enmeshed in the world of spin and politics. ... PR executives are so numerous that in some seats they are fighting one another." A spokesman for Spinwatch, a UK watchdog group, stated, "After 1994 lobbying firms were falling head over heels to employ new Labour researchers in the hope they would be MPs at the next election; now they are hiring Conservatives. ... There will always be questions about continuing contacts with clients if they are elected.”