MPs do about face on luxury pension plan

Legislators had voted to keep their own plush pensions, despite intense negotiations over trimming benefits for others After a few days’ reflection, the ruling Liberal Party and the Danish People's Party have announced that if the retirement age for the...

But when an equal retirement rules for both parliament and the people was proposed by the opposition Red-Green Alliance last week, an overwhelming majority of MPs – including the Liberals, the People’s Party (DF), and the Social Liberals (RV) voted it down.

In fact only Red-Green Alliance, Liberal Alliance and independent MP Christian H. Hansen voted in favour of the equal pensions proposal when it was first raised in parliament last Thursday.

After the weekend, however the Liberals and DF at least expressed a change of heart.

RV still had not come out with a statement expressly reversing its vote, but its economic spokesperson. MP Morten Østergaard told Berlingske newspaper the party would support the same retirement rules for parliament that it is proposing for the general population.

Speaking in particular about the actions of the RV – the party most in favour of a complete elimination of early retirement – Red-Green Alliance’s Frank Aaen said it was “a very strange way of doing politics”.

“I think it's untrustworthy that they vote ‘no’ on the one day, then put it forward themselves a few days later,” Aaen told Berlingske newspaper. “It would have been undeniably more trustworthy if they had supported our proposal the other day.”

Under current laws, MPs can take early retirement at age 60, after just one year in parliament, while ministers can retire with a generous pension at the age of 62.

The Liberal-Conservative government, RV and DF have been negotiating to raise the general retirement age to 67 and either to trim or eliminate the country’s early retirement programme.

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The Copenhagen Post

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