Help us have a look at who’s funding our political parties
It’s reporting season for political parties in the 2008-09 financial year. Well in as much as political parties are forced to report in Australia.
The Government’s recent decision to stall its much publicised reform of the process means that parties still don’t have to report donations of less than $10,900.
Liberals Senator Michael Ronaldson has been jumping up and down this afternoon about union donations to the Labor Party, totalling a hefty $5.14 million Australia-wide.
But for all the Liberals complaints about union funding, Labor are now voluntarily disclosing donations of over $1000 and making their list of disclosures a lot longer than the Coalition.
The Liberals largest corporate donations were Westfield who coughed up $100,000, ANZ with $50,00 and Coca Cola Amatil $40,000, but federal Labor are still wiping the floor with the federal Liberals in revenue.
The federal ALP had receipts worth $6.2 million last year and about $43 million including state branches, compared to federal Liberals $38.3 million Australia-wide and just $3 million for the federal branch. The National Party brought in just $5.2 million around Australia with about $700,000 for the federal party, but it was figure somewhat distorted by the founding of the Liberal Nationals in Queensland who had about $12.3 million in receipts.
Not surprisingly both major parties are in debt with federal Labor owing just over $7 million and the federal Liberals owing $4.2 million.
Needless to say this is not a summary that does the weight of the donations information much justice, so we are asking you to have a look for yourself and tell us what’s of concern to you.
The AEC website has some really good tools to enable you to sort the declarations by party state and federal branches, as well by those donating.
Let us know what what donations you find concerning or just interesting and in we’ll endeavor to publish a piece in the next few days taking in and crediting your observations.
Send your comments and findings to feedback (at) thepunch.com.au or post them down below.
Here’s one to look at for starters.
Laurence Kung individually donated $100,000 to the federal Labor Party in 2008-09. The Age reported last year that Mr Kung had refused six summons to return back to Taiwan to testify in the corruption trial of former Taiwanese President and friend Chen Shui-bian.
Mr Kung has been linked to a Taiwanese Government fund to support Taiwanese recognition in Asia and the South Pacific that Mr Chen has been accused of misusing. Mr Kung also flew Kevin Rudd on a business class trip to London for two weeks in 2005.
Obviously Mr Kung’s money is still good.
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