Britain’s embattled government is at the centre of fresh turmoil.
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith looks to be the latest casualty of an expenses scandal sweeping through parliament. UK media reports say she will stand down from her cabinet post in an upcoming reshuffle. Smith and her husband made headlines in March after a leaked copy of her expenses showed she charged taxpayers for his rental of two adult films. Facing a rout in European and local elections this Thursday, Prime Minister Gordon Brown is expected to reshuffle key ministerial posts next week. The move would be an attempt to re-assert his authority before a parliamentary poll he must call within a year. Transport Secretary Geoff Hoon may be in the firing line. He has agreed to pay money back after being accused of claiming allowances on two homes at the same time. And Alistair Darling’s position also looks precarious. A longtime political partner of Gordon Brown, the Chancellor is facing criticism for his own expenses claims and could be moved from the Treasury.