Greens spokesperson for democracy Senator Lee Rhiannon says Vicland property donations to One Nation, as well as Liberal, Labor and Family First parties, are a blatant example of money being used to buy political influence.
New research completed by the Greens Democracy for Sale project compared two party preferred polling figures with total donations declared in an election period. In elections where a particular party was expected to win government, donations favoured those parties.
“The fact that these donations came about because a property developer thought One Nation had good chances in elections goes to show how strong the relationship between donations and political outcomes is,” Senator Rhiannon said.
“Donations spike in election years for a reason.
“Vested interests and political parties accepting their money are quite upfront about that relationship – donors give money and expect special access and favourable political treatment. That should not be a feature of our democracy.
“Earlier this year, Tony Abbott shamelessly asked the mining and resources sector to ‘demonstrate their gratitude’ to Ian Macfarlane for his role in scrapping the mining tax, and inadvertently made a strong case for reforming revolving door politics.
“Now we owe thanks to Mr McNee of Vicland property, for being upfront about the purpose of his company’s donations to One Nation, Family First, the Labor Party and the Liberals – ‘access’. He cited the fact that he thought One Nation may ‘take government’ in Queensland as the reason for his donations’ generosity.
“Rather than setting themselves apart from the major parties, as they have promised to do, One Nation have mimicked them by accepting big donations and in-kind support from a major property development company,” Senator Rhiannon said.