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Simon takes a stab at electoral reform

By johnboy - 21 February 2012 4

Simon Corbell has announced efforts to reform our electoral process.

For some reason this reminded me of the words of US Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan:

When Dr. Johnson declared “patriotism” to be the last refuge of a scoundrel, he underestimated the potential of “reform”.

Certainly looking at what Simon is proposing it becomes clear these changes will make it harder for high profile independents to crack a seat while party machines fielding full slates of candidates will be able to spread significant amounts of love around:

“In the lead up to an election, candidates, lobbyists, unions and associated players would be limited to spending $60,000 each on their campaign, while a cap on donations from any one donor would be set at $10,000 in a financial year,” he said.

“Under the proposed reform, electoral expenditure will include advertising spend and the financing of opinion polls, as well as “gifts? including fundraising contributions of more than $250, and services provided other than volunteer labour.”

Mr Corbell said the proposed caps achieved an appropriate balance between the need for transparency, and resourcing candidates and organisations to engage in political activity.

The Bill also proposes changes to the level of public funding candidates receive according to the level of votes received.

It further proposes the establishment of an administrative funding regime for political parties similar to those in place in New South Wales and Queensland.

What’s Your opinion?


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4 Responses to
Simon takes a stab at electoral reform
Primal 11:55 pm 21 Feb 12

pezza said :

What’s the point of having multiple representatives if none of them have genuine, personal accountability and responsibility to their electors?

Because expecting one person to appropriately represent the entire cross-section of a given community is an inevitable failure?

Myles Peterson 7:59 pm 21 Feb 12

The Bill also proposes changes to the level of public funding candidates receive according to the level of votes received.

Raising the important question, will this “reform” result in more public funds for the party proposing the changes?

If the answer is ‘yes’, Labor better have a great argument as to why then need extra taxpayer dollars on top of incumbency and a huge party machine to participate fairly in the democratic process.

trevar 7:53 pm 21 Feb 12

With these guys wasting so much hot air trying to do break up a supermarket duopoly, I would like to see a valid reason why they’re spending public money trying to strengthen the political duopoly they’re half of…

pezza 7:03 pm 21 Feb 12

The only electoral reform in the ACT that I really care about is moving to a system with one representative per (obviously, geographically smaller) electorate. What’s the point of having multiple representatives if none of them have genuine, personal accountability and responsibility to their electors?

Funnily enough I don’t think that will ever happen.

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