- Date published:
7:37 am, November 22nd, 2019 - 57 comments
Categories: election funding, elections, electoral systems, national, nz first, same old national, Simon Bridges, uncategorized - Tags: Donghua Liu, SFO
So to recap.
There is a major party accused of running a Foundation that means it can hide the identity of donors and present a misleading picture to the public. And during the last election it funnelled most of its payments for electorate campaigns through this foundation.
And it’s leader received a donation from an individual but for whatever reason filed a return that hid the identity of the donor.
And so suspicious is this party’s activity in relation to the receipt of donations it is being investigated by a Government agency.
Ladies and gentlemen I am not talking about New Zealand First, I am talking about the National Party.
Here is the website for its foundation.
Its attempts to hide the source of donations has gone on for a while.
I noted previously how during the 2014 election campaign the total amount of donations declared by National candidates was $1.262 million and over 80% of this was funded from National Head Office.
In 2017 things were similar.
Of course the Foundation is not there to hide the identity of all donors. When the situation demands National is prepared to change the way donations are treated so that the existence of the donation and the identity of the donor are hidden, at least for a while.
And I wondered how the Foundation handled the receipt of seven identical $14,000 donations with a $2,000 donation on top that magically added up to $100,000 the apparent going price for a list MP’s position.
So National’s faux outrage concerning NZ First’s foundation is pretty hypocritical.
Its own practice means that the vast majority of donations to electorate campaigns are from their pet foundation and suddenly the threshold for disclosing the donor’s identity becomes $15,000 not $1,500.
By all means let us have a discussion about the current disclosure regime and what should be done to change it. The discussion could start with National admitting that it has been bending the rules. To the breaking point.