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Disclosure of political funding

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John Hewson Leader of the Opposition


11 May 1991


In regard to today's Sydney Morning Herald story about political funding, I can understand the frustration of Mr Bradbury, as a party fundraiser, with the Coalition's support for full, fair and equitable disclosure of contributions to political parties.

However, Mr Bradbury must accept that he and the party

organisation do not make the policies of the Parliamentary Party.

The decision taken on April 11, with the overwhelming support of the Joint Party Room, was correct.

It was not forced on me because of a desire to capitalise on

Labor's WA Inc troubles.

It was taken because it is the proper thing to do in the 1990's when the people of Australia expect political parties to

demonstrate that their fundraising practices meet the high standards of integrity demanded of political parties and political leaders.

The fact that the Federal Liberal Party has maintained a

responsible fundraising code for many years and has not been tainted with the smell of political corruption is not relevant. Propriety must not only be done it must be seen to be done.

The Coalition will work constructively to ensure the Federal Government's draft legislation on funding disclosure is in the end fair and equitable.

We will also maintain pressure on the Government to separate funding disclosure from the issue of political advertising and divide them into two separate bills, not combine them in one as the Government has done.

They are different issues and it is important that each is

treated on its merits.

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For further information contact Tony Abbott on 06-2864457.

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