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Turnbull does a Clive Palmer and buys power - one million reasons for political donation reform

Media Release
Lee Rhiannon 15 Jul 2016

The Turnbull $1 million donation to bail out the Liberal Party on the eve of the election is further proof that current electoral funding laws need a major overhaul to stop rich individuals buying their way into power, Greens democracy spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon said. 

“In the 2013 election Clive Palmer donated millions of dollars to his own party and now the Prime Minister is using his personal wealth to win power,” Senator Rhiannon said. 

“These examples are disturbing proof that the current electoral funding system is broken.

“The clock has been turned back on democracy being about a fairer electoral system. Turnbull’s $1 million donation is one of the crudest examples of wealth buying electoral power Australia has seen. 

“The fact that this $1 million donation was kept under wraps with only the donor, Malcolm Turnbull, and a few top Liberals in the know shows they understood this was a bad news story for the Prime Minister. 

“The PM did not disclose this donation before election day because he knows it would have lost him votes.

“Turnbull was silent on the need for political donation reform during the election campaign. We now know why.

“From time to time Labor claim that they are open to donations reform, but so far have refused to support those reforms in parliament. Today all they could come up with was that, like the Liberals, they wished they ‘had someone who had a lazy $1 million’ that could fund their campaign as well. 

“National uniform political donation laws including bans and caps on political donations, limits on election expenditure and greater transparency with real time disclosure will be a top priority for the Greens in the next parliament,” Senator Rhiannon said.

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