Very sadly, Labour and allies have voted down amendments which would have made the validatng legislation less obnoxious constitutionally.
Amendments which they defeated include:
Clause 6A(1) Nothing in this Act shall affect the High Court proceedings of Darnton v Clark dated 29 June 2006 (Civ No. 2006-485-1398) in which the plaintiff seeks a declaration that the expenditure on the “pledge card” and related brochures by the Labour Parliamentary Party is a breach of the Constitution Act 1986, the Public Finance Act 1989 and the Bill of Rights 1688.
This means Labour have explictly voted to kill off a lawsuit against themselves. This is even more repugnant that what Muldoon did as he did not stand to personally benefit from his actions in Fitzgerald v Muldoon. This also cements in place the big lie that Labour pushes that the Auditor-General changed the rules. The AG is adamant he did not, and this lawsuit would have allowed a Judge to decide whether or not the pledge card was legal under the current rules.
6A No effect on political parties wishing to repay monies
Nothing in this Act prevents political parties repaying any expenditure identified by the Controller and Auditor-General as being outside of the appropriation for any financial year
This clause would have guaranteed parties can not use this Act to backtrack on their commitment to pay the money back.
To omit “explicitly
This would have meant that all electioneering would be illegal, not just “explicit” electioneering which has loopholes so wide you can drive a pledge card through them.
They are currently voting on the final amendments to the short title and commencement date. These are now debated last, not first (something I only learnt today) so after this the Committee of the Whole should report back to the House, and then proceed with a third reading which should conclude around 5.20 pm.