Opposition parties are worried about this development and so they should be. Big money tends to favour parties on the right, so National and Act supporters are more likely than Labour and Green Party supporters to have the means to buy ads.
This is empirically wrong. Look at those who have spent over $100K in third party spending from 2008 to 2014:
- NZEI $445k
- PSA $267k
- Family First $133k
- Aged Care Assn $132k
- CTU $104k
Almost all the big third party money in NZ politics is on the left through unions.
Since then, Nicky Hagar has been honing his own version of attack politics, developing a knack for completing book after book just in time for an election campaign. The latest, Dirty Politics, had virtually no impact on the popularity of those it took aim at – John Key and the National Party.
His next book much be due out soon. I;ve been in two of them. Will I get the trifecta?
It’s impossible to rewrite our laws around advertising in time for this election, but they should be tightened nonetheless to avoid us eventually ending up where the US is now.
Actually the US has far far stricter electoral finance laws than New Zealand. It is not about the laws, it is about the culture.