Some large donations

March 29th, 2014 at 12:29 pm by David Farrar

The Electoral Commission publishes details of large (over $30,000) donations to parties as they are disclosed. These are the seven large donors since 2012:

Donor Amount Party
Colin Craig  $721,000.00 Conservatives
Brian Dalley (Estate)  $430,259.33 Labour
Laurence & Katrina Day  $100,000.00 Conservatives
Alan Gibbs  $100,000.00 ACT
Xiao Miao Fan  $53,602.65 National
Contue Jinwan Enterprise Group  $49,220.18 National
Graeme Douglas  $42,000.00 National

To put this is context, during the last three months of an election campaign a party that contests all 71 seats can spend up to $4,740,400.  Of that $2,915,700 can be spent on party vote campaign and $1,824,700 on getting electorate candidates elected.

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14 Responses to “Some large donations”

  1. Southern Raider (1,584 comments) says:

    Who’s the idiot that donated $400K to Labour? If it’s an estate then looks like the kids he left behind are half wits

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  2. peterwn (3,163 comments) says:

    SR Also with a donation of this sort from an estate the Labour Party should invest the money and use the income for party purposes. Bill English and Tony Ryall have a nice little investment opportunity for them.

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  3. Sir Cullen's Sidekick (788 comments) says:

    Good to see Brian Dalley bro backing the winners….

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  4. thor42 (920 comments) says:

    What about the *union* contributions to Labour?
    Wouldn’t they dwarf the amounts in this table?

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  5. Rex Widerstrom (5,266 comments) says:

    Some background on the donors would be useful, so we could ascertain just what influence they are trying to buy. Craig and Gibbs are obvious, but the rest…?

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  6. AG (1,784 comments) says:

    To put this is context, during the last three months of an election campaign a party that contests all 71 seats can spend up to $4,740,400. Of that $2,915,700 can be spent on party vote campaign and $1,824,700 on getting electorate candidates elected.

    That’s not quite how it works, but! Parties can (and do) spend money on their party vote campaigns, but they leave it up to individual candidates to raise and spend money on their own campaigns in particular electorates (who then must declare any donations made to them over $1500).

    I guess a Party could in theory centralise all its fundraising (i.e. raise money both for its national party vote campaign and individual electorate races) and then dole out the campaign cash to its individual candidates. But I don’t think any party ever has done this, have they? In which case, the relevant figure is $2,915,700, because that’s the limit that parties in fact are spending up to.

    That said, the limit is only on election advertising spending. So in practice, parties are spending much, much more than this on their overall campaigns (when you factor in hiring staff, opinion polling, travel, campaign HQs, etc, etc).

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  7. igm (1,413 comments) says:

    The leeches come out in states of envy when someone supports a real party.

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  8. sooty (53 comments) says:

    When will the Internet party show up, with their donations.

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  9. wiseowl (763 comments) says:

    I bet no-one will comment on the National donations.

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  10. Johnboy (14,998 comments) says:

    Brian Dalley. (estate) Obviously a dead bloody Mick. Stupid enough to give his ill-gotten gains to the Silent T mob.

    Typical dumb Irish bastard! :)

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  11. Johnboy (14,998 comments) says:

    Gidday Minus! :)

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  12. mjw (228 comments) says:

    Let’s not forget the additional $635 k received in 2012 from people who donated between $15,00 and $15,000 to the National party. That would extrapolate to about $1.9m over three years – a huge contribution to the national campaign, all from so-called small donors. So these $1,500 a plate dinners are really quite material to National Party funding.

    I imagine the auditors will be checking the 2013 donation return very carefully, to make sure contributors over multiple dinners are appropriately declared, and that the contributions are recorded in the name of the companies who actually paid for the dinners, rather than the name of the person eating. Should make interesting reading.

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  13. bringbackdemocracy (394 comments) says:

    I thought Labour didn’t declare the donation from the Dalley estate in accordance with their obligations under electoral law.

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  14. Scott1 (448 comments) says:

    Rex,
    For one – Contue would probably oppose capital gains taxes and restrictions on foreign land investment.

    As to the estate – I suspect giving an estate might say more about your relationship to alternative recipients.

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