Just hours before the budget was announced by the Coalition, Tory MEP Sir Robert Atkins demanded increased spending on more Eurocrats within the new European Foreign Service.
Speaking in a hearing with Baroness Ashton (pictured
) in Brussels, Atkins, who was embroiled in the MEP expenses scandal, called for Ashton to appoint 'half a dozen' junior ministers in addition to the 7,000 staff she already employs, some of whom earn more than Foreign Secretary William Hague.
UKIP MEP David Campbell Bannerman
, who also sat in the committee hearing, was shocked. He said:
"It is outrageous for the Conservatives and Sir Robert to demand more taxpayers' money be spent on Baroness Ashton. The unelected Baroness is already the world's highest paid female politician and enjoys a huge entourage of privileged staff and advisors.
"If she can't do her job with all the lackeys and perks she already has, maybe she should resign and save the taxpayer the outrageous costs associated with her office. This includes a reported recent order of £200,000 limousines, a figure equivalent to the salaries of ten newly qualified nurses.
"A year ago, the Conservatives told voters they ‘would not let matters rest' over the Lisbon Treaty.
"The fact that this suggestion for increased EU spending came from a Conservative Euro MP shows clearly how the Tories have not only abandoned their earlier promise but are now enthusiastically supporting it, and even calling for its expansion.
"They say one thing at home but do a different thing in Brussels."