AEC figures reveal massive donations to political parties

By Charis Chang, originally published 3rd February on Pauline Hanson’s One Nation raised more than $3 million to help fund her election campaign last year — just $76,183 less than the National Party of Australia. According to Australian Electoral Commission figures released today, One Nation raised $3,023,689 during the 2018-19 financial year, compared to… Read More

Hidden money in politics: What the AEC disclosures won’t show us

Media release 11 February 2020. A new briefing paper released by The Centre for Public Integrity today shows that vast amounts of money potentially influencing last year’s federal election will not be disclosed to the public. Annual returns released on Monday by the Australian Electoral Commission will only cover some donations to political parties and… Read More

7.30 Report: Sporting clubs look for answers

Published on 7.30 Report 22nd January 2020. PETER WILLIAMS, CASTLEMAINE BOWLING CLUB:  The Castlemaine Bowling Club provides a really important function in our community. It provides opportunities for people to engage in a sport, that’s available for people from birth through to their hundreds. We have a number of people who are no longer playing… Read More

Sports rorts expose Coalition’s tame corruption watchdog plan

By Anthony Whealy, originally published in the Australian Financial Review 22nd January 2020. The ‘Sport’s Rort’ scandal reflects a new low in our political system. Bridget McKenzie’s actions were much worse than mere pork-barrelling, detestable though that practice is. Here, there was a large scale program appropriately informed by a carefully laid out assessment and… Read More

Bridget McKenzie may have breached ministerial standards: former Supreme Court justice

By Katie Burgess, originally published in the Canberra Times 22 January 2020. Bridget McKenzie may have breached ministerial standards by targeting marginal electorates through a $100 million sports grants program, a former Supreme Court justice says. Senior members of the Morrison government are standing by Senator McKenzie, after an audit last week revealed her office… Read More

ABC PM: Federal ICAC would investigate sports grants affair, former NSW auditor-general says

Published ABC PM 20th January 2020. A federal independent commission against corruption would get to the bottom of the sports grants scandal, according to Tony Harris, who was the auditor-general of NSW for seven years. Key points The Federal Government awarded $100 million of sports grants just prior to the election Former NSW auditor-general Tony… Read More

Opinion: McKenzie scandal highlights need for a national integrity commission

By Hannah Aulby, originally published in the Canberra Times on 21st January 2020. The ability for Nationals deputy leader Bridget McKenzie to use public money for partisan political gains, and face no official retribution, highlights serious flaws in our accountability system. The response to the findings of the Australian National Audit Office has been pretty… Read More

Opinion: Your government does not want corruption investigated

Opinion piece by Stephen Charles, published in the Sydney Morning Herald 20th January 2020. The sports grant rort uncovered by the Australian National Audit Office last week is far worse than traditional pork-barrelling and equates to political corruption. It again underlines the urgent need for a strong and independent national integrity commission to hold politicians… Read More

AFR: The $500,000 sports grant that failed to save Abbott

By Andrew Tillet and Patrick Durkin. Originally published in the Australian Financial Review on 18th January 2020. Mosman Rowing Club received $500,000 in taxpayer funding under the Morrison government’s discredited sporting grants program in a last-ditch but ultimately unsuccessful attempt to save Tony Abbott’s political career. Mr Abbott announced that the club had received the… Read More