MP David Gauke has urged his Parliamentary colleagues to “bite the bullet” and publish full details of their expenses.

The Government announced yesterday that it would ignore a landmark legal ruling and keep full details of MPs' expenses secret.

Ministers provoked fury yesterday when they effectively brushed aside February’s High Court ruling demanding the publication of a receipt-by-receipt break-down.

Parliament will instead attempt to exclude itself from the relevant parts of the Freedom of Information Act – under which the ruling was made – and publish only limited details.

But Mr Gauke, Conservative member for South West Hertfordshire, said today that Parliament’s continued resistance served only to damage the reputations of hard-working members.

He said: “I think it’s only reasonable that we go ahead and publish them – it is the public’s money after all.

“The problem is that not publishing them makes us look as if we have something to hide. We don’t”

“I’m sure there will be stories published as a result that won’t look great for some members but I think we just have to bite the bullet on this one.”

Moreover, Mr Gauke added, full publication would most likely serve to improve the public image of MPs by showing voters that most money claimed does not go on luxury personal goods but on the successful running of offices.

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