Ross leaks again

Written By: - Date published: 9:33 am, August 27th, 2019 - 46 comments
Categories: China, election 2017, election funding, national, same old national, uncategorized - Tags:

The Herald this morning contains details of further information provided by Jami-Lee Ross to the Herald indicating that there is a rather large hole in our electoral laws which needs fixing.

Matt Nippert has the details:

Former National Party MP Jami-Lee Ross has dropped a fresh donation bombshell, revealing then-trade minister Todd McClay helped facilitate a $150,000 donation to his party in 2016 from a company owned by a Chinese racing industry billionaire known as “Mr Wolf”.

McClay first met horse-racing mogul Lang Lin in July 2016 while the then cabinet member was in Beijing for a meeting of G20 trade ministers. The pair met again in April 2017 in Rotorua, McClay’s electorate. A month later National declared a six-figure donation paid by Lang’s company, Inner Mongolia Rider Horse Industry NZ (IMRHINZ).

The donation was largely organised by a phone call made from Ross’ parliamentary office to Lang’s representatives on the evening of April 4, 2017. Ross claims he was asked to make the call by McClay, who was in the office listening to the call on speaker, and the minister was kept informed of developments.

The revelations a minister was involved in facilitating National’s largest donation of the most recent electoral cycle – with the cash coming from a China-owned business – comes as Parliament mulls how to counter foreign interference in New Zealand’s political system.

The basic problem is that while donations from overseas individuals over $1,500 are not permitted donations from New Zealand companies are, even if as in this case the director and shareholder of the New Zealand company is an overseas national.

The donation was declared to the Electoral Commission.  I remember reading it at the time and wondering if Inner Mongolia Rider Horse Industry (NZ) Ltd was some sort of joke by Matthew Hooton using his Mongolian links.

But this shows how easily avoided the ban of overseas donations is.  Just find a New Zealand company willing to funnel the cash.

Of course the solution is state funding of political parties.  Then concerns of too much influence by overseas interests and corporates would disappear.

While I am on this subject can I urge the Electoral Commission to put the individual MPs’ returns back on the website.  Effective democracy requires this information being readily available.

46 comments on “Ross leaks again”

  1. JohnP 1

    National will likely claim that this, once again, is all of Ross' doing and that he's the bad apple in the barrel. Which rather ignores the fact that the barrel itself is absolutely rotten.

  2. Sacha 2

    Not so much a leak as a deliberate dribble. Expect more to come.

  3. Sanctuary 3

    I doubt the public needs much more evidence that the National patsy is now a wholly owned subsidary of the Communist Party of China, huh? This sort of legal corruption goes a long way to explaining (to mention the most egregrious example) National's utter denial of a housing problem in NZ and opposition to any policy that smacked of implicit or explicit criticism of China – where they adopted the Blairite approach of smearing anyone who even dared raise the over-heating of the local housing market by Chinese investment in NZ as a racist. 

    The wider interesting meta is how this plugs into Simon Bridge's general hysterical terror of allowing greater oversight of political parties by neutral state institutions. If when in power you indulged in the routine abuse of state power and got (in my opinion) corrupt donations from foreign powers and your party benefited politically from that is a way the skewed the democratic playing field sharply in your direction then like all entitled frat boys everywhere Simon Bridges will interpret leveling the playing field as discrimination and whine and bitch and engage in tantrums.  

    • Anne 3.1

      … when in power you indulged in the routine abuse of state power and got (in my opinion) corrupt donations from foreign powers – while at the same time you arranged for the main opposition party to be accused of obtaining corrupt donations from foreign sources – and your party benefited politically from both…

      FIFY.

      I refer to the Donghua Liu $100,000 donation to the Labour Party in 2014 which proved never to have existed.

      Remember the screams and hollers of outrage by the MSM?

  4. michelle 4

    cash for favours all part of the brighter future that had hairs on it 

  5. Robert Guyton 5

    "Ross claims he was asked to make the call by McClay, who was in the office listening to the call on speaker." 

     Listening-in to the chat with “Mr Wolf” ?

    Did McClay lack the courage to speak to him directly?

    • Dukeofurl 5.1

      That way he can deny any conflict of interest when  special favours are made for the Wolf.

      I can imagine a NZ taxpayer funded  sheep horse breeding farm in  Inner Mongolia on the horizon

    • Sacha 5.2

      Not as if they really trusted JLR on the phone with anyone alone, even then. 🙂

    • mac1 6.1

      I had a look at this article and other articles by journalist Tom Rabe. In the article linked by indiana the Labor leader referred to was described at 'former Labor boss." In another article, the Labor general secretary was described as "labor boss." 

      On the other hand Liberal and National politicians  were referred to as 'leaders" or as "president" as they should have been.

      In my lexicon, the word 'boss' is a perjorative one when applied to left wing leaders and union presidents. It is associated with Tammany Hall type politics and behaviour.

      Tom Rabe is described as a journalist, a profession which is supposed to be fair in its language. Is he consciously or unconsciously biased in his journalistic reporting?

       

       

    • Dukeofurl 6.2

      From your story

      " fundraising dinner attracted concern from the Electoral Commission after several restaurant workers and family members of Jonathan Yee, owner of Emperor's Garden Restaurant in Chinatown, claimed to have donated $100,000 in cash, which was supposedly raised on the night.

      "The associations, along with the implausibility that restaurant workers would have the financial capacity to make lump sum donations of $5000 or $10,000,.."

      Like the National donation  of $100k from a restaurant owner arranged by  Bridges which, when paid , was split into smaller amounts to get below the  full disclosure limit.

      I wonder if those 'straw' donors  had the capacity to donate such large amounts to a NZ political party they werent members of  or  have no real connection to?

  6. mickysavage 7

    Thinking about this issue through my law practice I am up to my ears in anti money laundering requirements and have to put everyone and all sources of funds through pretty heavy vetting.

    Political parties should have the same requirement.

    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/2009/0035/latest/whole.html#DLM2140855

    • tc 7.1

      here here mickey !

    • Visubversa 7.2

      Yes, I know the stuff I have to do a a JP to enable people to establish their "true identity" under the Money Laundering Act. I tend to think that most pale, balding, middle aged chaps look very much alike – so it is a bit of a challenge sometimes. Espeically with Drivers Licenses!

  7. Incognito 8

    In other words, ‘pretty legal’?

  8. Cinny 9

    Cheers for posting all the info Micky, very much appreciated.

    Wondering if McClay planned his retirement before or after JLR went solo.

    Will have to google that later

  9. AB 10

    Gee – it looks like 1 Chinese might be worth even more Indians than Simon suggested to Jami on the phone a while back?  

    • Dukeofurl 10.1

      Under the Previous PM  was it known as "key money" to  get a captains pick  high on the List…hahaha

    • greywarshark 11.1

      Chinese, I understand, call a little succulent a 'jade money tree' and they also have 'lucky bamboo'.  Perhaps the money grows on trees like the cliche says.    It goes against nature to pay your restaurant workers that well.

  10. tc 12

    Bet he's wondering what he has to do to become 'prominent'.

    This could be strategic from the trougher seeking one last pay off.

  11. tsmithfield 13

    Hardly a splash on the news front. I suspect MSM is starting to tire of all this, as are the public. Again, a release with absolutely no impact. Nothing illegal.

    Probably just confirming what most suspect. That politicians try and game the rules as much as they can. And I suspect that National isn't the only party that does this.

     

     

     

    • woodart 13.1

      trying to bury this are you smithfeild? foriegners buying our political system is NOT tiresome. it is something that msm and everybody else should be very aware of. needs to be at front of any msm political coverage to remind us.

      • Anne 13.1.1

        If there is one positive thing Trump has done thus far in his term, it is to highlight the extent of foreign political interference in the affairs of western democracies. 

        Unintentional though it surely was, we might have to give thanks to him one day. 🙂

      • tsmithfield 13.1.2

        Notice that even Labour are treading very carefully around this.

        The reason being that they have no way of knowing whether or not they have benefited from some foreign entity through exactly the same mechanism.

        • Roflcopter 13.1.2.1

          Rebecca Kitteridge @ GCSB said it happens right across the political spectrum, at central and local government levels.

        • Dukeofurl 13.1.2.2

          "they have no way of knowing" ????

          Nobody gives large donations out of the blue  like you think , unless its a deceased person  who leaves money in their will and they dont chop up into smaller amounts.

          National party these days, means those MPs who are  big fund raisers from donors get   power within the party . Thats been the case   since " No Brash  No cash" days.

          Thats the point of giving a large donation, you get influence or you get a family member on the party list

           

          • tsmithfield 13.1.2.2.1

            Maybe Labour's careful stance on all this might be something to do with this:

            https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12058818

            • Dukeofurl 13.1.2.2.1.1

              No  its not.  It was a private individual who made the claims to the US enquiry.  Wasnt official .

              Plus the NZ labour connection was  for raising money from NZ residents.  It also mentions a national Mp who has strong connections to the China PLA military intelligence who seemed to  appear at certain  national government high level meetings in China that a lowly back bencher would never be seen at. Thats not including that lavish dinner ' on the way to the airport' in China that was connected to an Mps husbands business in China  not to be confused  with the other  former National MP whos husbands  China business interests caused her resignation – which bought in JLR to parliament.!

  12. NZJester 14

    We need a non-partisan group like the Wolf-Pac in the US here in New Zealand trying to get money out of politics to stop the legal bribing of our politicians for favors by those giving large donations. 

  13. Stuart Munro. 15

    So I'm guessing donation rules are scheduled for the Gnat bonfire? Funny that.

  14. todd mcclay his father was a crook and it looks like the seed does not fall far from the tree

  15. marty mars 17

    I wish this guy would stop doing this. I remain unconvinced by any apparent sincerity this guy shows.

    • Dukeofurl 17.1

      Why do you think he has to be  "sincere"  LOL . hes after revenge , its surprisingly common in politics.

  16. sumsuch 18

    Ross's revelations have permanently illuminated the boofish realpoliteking of the National leadership. Can't not see Bridges in that adolescent cocky first 15 light. They can wear ties all they like but they're just far too obvious diversions from their thugee ways.

    They really do need to put in someone who the majority of us don't feel we're looking over the shoulder of, but I fear Simon has smeared his entire generation of National 'elders' with shallow venality.

  17. sumsuch 19

    Authentic — both Trump and Sanders, in their 180 degree different ways. What the people want in their leaders now according to Bill Maher.

    No one could accuse Bridges of that. Whatever he says might as well be whistling out of another region of his body for media followers.

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    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016).  The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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