Many have argued that the careerist MP is a Conservative in wolves clothing and looking at the books that James reads, that would suggest so. James, who is close friends of the former Prime Minister Tony Blair and tipped as a future leader of the Labour Party, claimed a total of £42 on books from Amazon courtesy of the taxpayer which included:
Reflections on the Revolution in France
According to the Telegraph, this book is kept by Conservatives as a case against 20th Century Socialism. Other books by the author include "The evils of revolution".
Amazon price: £6.29
David Willetts MP
Penned by the Conservative MP and Shadow Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills. Willets is seen as a 'centrist moderniser' in David Cameron's Conservatives. Before becoming an MP he served as a researcher to Nigel Lawson and later Margaret Thatcher's policy unit.
Amazon Price: £0.01 (Used and New)
Good to Great
Jim Collins is a management theorist. According to the Telegraph, the book tells readers “there are no silver bullets to greatness”.
Amazon Price: £15.39
Following on from the article, the Telegraph alleges that James claimed £247 for 3,000 “flexible fridge magnets”. We can only presume that they are for the big fridge which accommodates £400 a months worth of groceries. Also claimed was £223 for a new digital camera which was classed as an office expense.
On another article, The Telegraph attacks MPs who used taxpayer funds to promote themselves with local sports teams. Purnell claimed £411.25 on a programme advertisement for the 2004/05 season at Stalybridge Celtic Football Club as part of his communications allowance. The Telegraph doesn't mention any further advertising after that. Perhaps it had something to do with the small detail that there was a general election in 2005?
The hole for James just gets deeper ...