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Like their millionaire colleagues around the cabinet table, MPs can’t be seen to be avoiding the pain that their public sector constituents seem set to suffer

What with the number of millionaires around the Cabinet table (nearly two dozen apparently), it can sometimes be a little difficult for economically hard-pressed public sector workers to find common ground with their leaders.

When it comes to increased pension contributions however, it seems that for once this gilded elite is going to be worse off than other public servants.

Whereas as the proposed average public sector increase in contribution clocks in at around the 3.2% mark, Cabinet Ministers will be looking at a figure of 4.2%.

It’s hardly going to have them selling The Big Issue outside Number 10, but it is jolly good politics when the coalition’s often-quoted party line is ‘we’re all in this together’.

David Cameron, who will be paying £4600 more, has laid it on the line to his Cabinet colleagues about the need for the increases and the message they send to a public that has already taken to the streets to express their rejection of the pension reforms due to kick in, along with auto enrolment and NEST in the private sector, shortly. A recent memo from the Prime Minister was very clear and direct on the subject.

"Whilst the ministerial scheme was not covered by Lord Hutton's recommendations (on reforms to public sector pensions), Ministers will be expected to show the way."

"Our pensions are among the most generous in the public services. We cannot expect public service workers, some of whom are very modestly paid, to take on a burden we are not prepared to assume for ourselves."

So, what exactly is that ‘burden’? Well, Cabinet Ministers who currently pay nearly 12% of their £69K salary will be expected to stump up nearly 18% under the new arrangements, £4000 more.

Moving down the rungs of power, Ministers of State will get off slightly better, paying 4% more, £1320. A junior Minister will have to fork out 2.5% extra. This equates to £592.

And where the government goes, the official opposition must surely follow. At the top, Labour leader Ed Miliband will have to find another 6% per year of he is to keep his pension benefits ticking over at the same level.

And what about the average MP on his or her salary of £65 738? At the moment they have the option of contributing 11.9%, 7.9% or 5.9% of that towards their pension. But that is predicted to change too.

A review being conducted by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) will almost definitely make things less attractive for the run-of-the-mill House of Commons member too.

How will our MPs react when the final figures of their settlement are agreed? Well, with the image of MP’s still burdened by the expenses’ scandal, there might be some harrumphing in the corridors of power, but probably no strike action or street demos.

Like their millionaire colleagues around the cabinet table, MPs can’t be seen to be avoiding the pain that their public sector constituents seem set to suffer. They simply can’t afford not to, as you might say.

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