The real question: will federal integrity body probe Labor?

The Albanese government heads into its first parliamentary session next week promising to deliver its election promises. This is laudable. The devil will be in the detail. And devil is the right word when it comes to the details of the promised integrity commission. There is a blindingly obvious rot at the centre of the… Read More

Calls for probe into Tasmanian political grants, amid revelation club where Liberal family member is treasurer wins $50k

An integrity expert has called for an independent inquiry into the Tasmanian Liberal Party’s use of a controversial grants fund during the 2021 election campaign, arguing millions of dollars of taxpayer money may have been misappropriated. The Liberals established the Local Communities Facilities Fund as an election promise, and a “Liberal Party Policy team” internally… Read More

Labor to introduce real-time disclosures and slash donations thresholds

Politicians would have to declare political donations over $1000 in real time as part of a sweeping package of integrity measures Special Minister of State Don Farrell hopes to introduce by mid-2023. Labor also wants to introduce “truth in political advertising” laws and potentially double the number of senators allocated to the Northern Territory and… Read More

Stronger safeguards around lobbying are a must

In any democracy, lobbying is a vital component of the political process, ensuring that varied interest groups can make their case on specific issues to elected officials. It is a source of reforms to policy, from neighbourhood planning to our response to global issues such as climate change. But in all democracies there is the… Read More

Australia’s funpark for felons leaves the nation vulnerable to hostile foreign powers

By Peter Hartcher, originally published by SMH on the 16th of February 2021. You could be forgiven for thinking that the Bergin report that damned Crown casinos last week was only about greed and crime. It was not. It’s bad enough that Crown casinos effectively had become bankers to some of the world’s worst crime… Read More

$50 million in secret political donations

RN Breakfast with Fran Kelly, originally broadcast on Monday the 15th of February. A new analysis of political donations shows that the major parties raked in almost $50 million last year from unknown sources. The problem is mainly due to the disclosure laws – any donation of below $14,300 does not have to be identified.… Read More

Hidden political donations hit record high

By David Crowe, originally published by the Sydney Morning Herald on the 14th of February 2021. Federal political parties received $50 million in unexplained cash last year in another sign of the trend towards secretive donations. The “hidden money” – revealed in new analysis that calls for tougher disclosure laws so voters can know the… Read More

Labor and Liberal parties get $100m as political donations for 2020 are revealed

By Clare Armstrong, originally published by the Daily Telegraph 1 February 2021. Labor and the Coalition raked in more than $100 million in donations in one year, as almost half of the total spend on all political parties came from just five donors. Mining magnate Clive Palmer topped the list of donors, pouring $5.9 million… Read More

Media release: 46% of 2019-20 donations came from just 5 donors: AEC disclosure

February 1 2021 The most recent AEC donations disclosures confirm the need for urgent reform of ourpolitical finance system. The data shows that big donors are dominating the funding ofour political parties, with 46% of all donations coming from just 5 donors. Total donations 2019 – 2020 $18,020,970 Biggest donors Mineralogy $5,910,341 Pratt Holdings $1,550,000… Read More