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Thursday, 15 November 2018
Page: 8423


Senator WATERS (Queensland) (17:49): by leave—I move Greens amendments (5) and (6) on sheet 8546 revised together:

(5) Schedule 1, item 7, page 6 (before line 19), before the definition of senior staff, insert:

restricted donor means:

(a) a person or entity that carries on:

   (i) a property development business; or

   (ii) a mining business; or

   (iii) a business manufacturing tobacco products; or

   (iv) a business manufacturing alcoholic products; or

   (v) a business providing gambling services; or

   (vi) a business providing banking services; or

   (vii) a business manufacturing pharmaceutical products; or

   (viii) a business manufacturing defence products; or

(b) an associate (within the meaning of the Corporations Act 2001) of such a person or entity.

(6) Schedule 1, item 33, page 42 (after line 5), after section 302E, insert:

302EA Donations to political entities by restricted donors

(1) A person or entity (the donor) contravenes this subsection if:

(a) the donor is a restricted donor; and

(b) the donor makes a gift to, or for the benefit of, a political entity.

Note: The physical elements of an offence against subsection (2) are set out in this subsection (see section 302R).

Offence

(2) A person or entity commits an offence if the person or entity contravenes subsection (1).

Penalty: 2 years imprisonment or 800 penalty units.

(3) Section 15.4 of the Criminal Code (extended geographical jurisdiction—category D) applies to an offence against subsection (2).

Civil penalty

(4) A person or entity is liable to a civil penalty if the person or entity contravenes subsection (1).

Civil penalty:

The higher of the following:

(a) 800 penalty units;

(b) if there is sufficient evidence for the court to determine the amount or value, or an estimate of the amount or value, of the gift at the time the gift is made—3 times that amount or value.

(5) Subsection (4) applies:

(a) whether or not the conduct constituting the contravention of subsection (1) occurs in Australia; and

(b) whether or not a result of the conduct constituting the alleged contravention of subsection (1) occurs in Australia.

I will outline for the chamber the effect of these amendments. We have already seen how enormous the influence of big corporates is over this chamber, and the public are absolutely sick of the vested interests of donors getting put ahead of the interests of the community. This amendment would seek to ban donations from eight of the most influential and self-interested industries that so far have had a stranglehold over this parliament. This amendment would completely ban donations from the property development industry, mining, tobacco, alcohol, gambling, the big banks, defence and big pharma. The Australian people have the right to expect that decisions are made in their interests and not in the interests of those big corporations. There have previously been some comments about the questionable constitutionality of these amendments. I would simply direct anyone interested in that to the McCloy case. We are perfectly able to have those restrictions; it is simply a question of whether or not the big parties want their money to dry up. I am not expecting support for this amendment, because we know that both of the big parties have taken $100 million in donations from the big corporates in the last six years, but we live in hope.