Election campaign funding
State capture occurs when powerful or wealthy interests interfere with decision-making and assume a degree of control over the democratic rule-making process itself. This report breaks down six modes of influence used in State capture.
This guide summarises the complex funding and disclosure laws federally, and in each Australian state and territory. This document does not attempt to capture every nuance of each system and is not a substitute for legal advice. The analysis separates out donations and electoral expenditure...
This report explores how the powerful fossil fuel, gambling and tobacco industries are attempting to take advantage of Australia’s weak integrity laws, thereby distorting the nation's democratic processes, to put profits ahead of society's wellbeing.
Compared to other Australian states, Tasmania has weaker political donation laws, less government transparency and limited public accountability. This report recommends that the Tasmanian government undertake significant, rather than piecemeal, reform in 2021, to ensure the people of Tasmania have confidence in their democracy and...
This paper deals with the intersection between three sets of challenges that constitute existential threats to democracies across the world. The first is money in politics which not only poses the danger of ‘policy capture’ but also, in worse scenarios, state capture by monied interests.
The Palmer advertisements were a problem in more ways than one. They contained content that was possibly distorted, potentially divisive, and likely damaging to Australia’s reputation and international relationships.
This paper re-caps the events which influenced electoral reforms in 2018, before examining in greater detail the relevant legislative provisions, the concept of implied freedom of political communication under the Constitution, and the reasoning of the High Court in Unions NSW v New South Wales.
Election funding and disclosure in Australian states and territories: a quick guide - November 2018 update
This guide summarises the often complex funding and disclosure laws federally, and in each Australian state and territory. These laws regulate who can make and receive political donations, how and when those donations must be disclosed, how much money political parties can spend on election...
This discussion paper sets out the proposed levels of caps on electoral expenditure and political donations, as well as the introduction of partial public funding of political parties and candidates as recommended by the independent inquiry.
Advisory report on the Electoral Legislation Amendment (Electoral Funding and Disclosure Reform) Bill 2017
While most would agree that only Australians should have the power to influence our election outcomes, our nation is one of the few western democracies where foreign money can still be used to influence domestic elections.
In announcing this Bill as part of a package of bills focusing on foreign interference in Australian politics, the Prime Minister specifically highlighted China, whilst noting that the reforms were not purely about China.
Freedom of speech is fundamental to a free society. Political communication is obviously an important mode of speech and accordingly, the laws and regulations that seek to restrict it are inherently concerning.
Election funding and disclosure in Australian states and territories: a quick guide - November 2017 update
This guide summarises the often complex funding and disclosure laws in each Australian state and territory for the purpose of comparison.
Taking private donations out of the equation would help restore trust in the political system – and we’re already partway there, writes Mike Steketee.
Investigation into NSW Liberal Party electoral funding for the 2011 state election campaign and other matters
The NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) Operation Spicer investigation has exposed prohibited donations, fund channelling and non-disclosures in the NSW Liberal Party’s 2011 state election campaign.
ALP leader Kevin Rudd, Coalition leader Tony Abbott and Palmer United Party leader Clive Palmer all accuse each other of attempting to win the election with massive spending on advertising. Are their claims correct?
This paper considers the constitutional and practical constraints upon reforming electoral campaign funding in Australia. It addresses the banning or capping of political donations, the limiting of campaign expenditure and the expansion of public funding of political parties. In doing so, it draws on the...
This submission to the 2020 Summit discusses political financing and argues that removing the dependence of political parties on large donors and preventing the use of parliamentary and government resources for partisan purposes will do much to restore the health of Australian democracy and confidence...