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Xenophon calls for immediate overhaul of campaign financing rules.



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3/8/2009

XENOPHON CALLS FOR IMMEDIATE OVERHAUL OF CAMPAIGN FINANCING RULES

Independent Senator for South Australia Nick Xenophon has called on the Federal Government to immediately reform the rules surrounding political donations following the latest scandal concerning political donations in Queensland.

“Politicians already get paid to meet people,” Nick said. “It’s called a salary.”

Senator Xenophon argues that any party which receives publicly funded campaign financing should face severe restrictions on the amounts it can receive from private sources.

“Right now the major parties are able to have their snouts in two troughs,” Nick said. “Big business should not be able to buy access to our politicians.”

“These sort of undisclosed payments from individuals, unions and big businesses have a corrosive effect on our democracy,” Nick said.

“If politicians are spending their time milking unions and big business $10,000 a plate, it means they are not spending time talking to real people about real problems,” Nick said.

Senator Xenophon is calling for significant restrictions on individual donations (with a suggested figure of $1000), as well as restrictions on the total amount a political party can privately raise and still receive public campaign funding.

“No one gives money without expecting something in return,” Nick said. “It’s time the major parties were honest about that.”

For more information please call Rohan Wenn on 0409 696 531 or Nick Xenophon on 0411 626 677.