Brown to Purge Cabinet After Expenses Flap

Scandal-hit ministers face axe as PM plans government overhaul
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted May 21, 2009 7:16 AM CDT
Brown to Purge Cabinet After Expenses Flap
Britain's Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Business Secretary Peter Mandelson talk with a potential car buyer at a car dealership in north London, Monday May 18, 2009.   (AP Photo/Sang Tan)

Gordon Brown has been dropping hints of a major reshuffle and possible constitutional reform as the crisis over British MPs' expenses continues. The Telegraph alleged today that two ministers fiddled with the rules to avoid paying capital gains tax after selling their homes. The PM is said to be preparing an overhaul of his cabinet, and modernizers in the government are pushing him to hold a constitutional convention.

Speculation is rife that Peter Mandelson, the prime minister's archrival-turned-confidant, may be promoted to foreign secretary, while ministers who made questionable expense claims will be booted. Mandelson and other leaders want Brown to introduce big changes, including caps on party donations and an end to the House of Lords. The PM is expected to reshuffle his cabinet soon after June 4 local elections, at which Labour is expected to receive a drubbing.
(Read more Gordon Brown stories.)

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