Monday, December 10, 2007

The cunning plan to exempt parliamentary spending

This is the sort of analysis that should be in the daily papers.
This post will be a bit difficult to follow, but it is an important one. It will show how the Government’s actions on this bill are those of naked self interest and to legalise their previously illegal actions.

Labour broke the law in two ways in 2005. They over-spent under the Electoral Act, and illegally used taxpayer money on their election campaign. Changing one law without changing the other doesn’t help them much.

But they made one mistake. Instead of writing the law so it explicitly said that anything approved by the Parliamentary Service could not be considered an election expense (which would help get around the case law from the 1988 Wairarapa Electoral Petition), they just made it implicit. They did not want the public odium of stating their intentions quite so blatantly.

But they then struck a problem. The Electoral Commission said that they did not know what these clauses meant, and the credibility of the law was seriously threatened. So Annette King panicked...

Read the rest here at Farrars Place It's one of his best posts of the year.




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