A third Labour breach

The Electoral Commission has announced:

On 15 August 2011, the Electoral Commission referred the following matters to Police:

  • MP, Ohariu Census,
  • Party newspaper advertisements in Sunday Star Times and NZ Herald
  • Party ‘Prices are Rising Faster than Wages’ flyer.
It is the Electoral Commission’s view that the publication of each of these items constitutes a breach of sections 204F and 204H of the 1993 because the items are election advertisements that do not contain a valid promoter statement and were not authorised in writing by the party secretary.
The referral of Chauvel to the Police is new. Whale blogged on his survey back in July.
ACT should also know better, and should have authorised their newspaper ads. They are not even borderline calls.
No Right Turn comments:
This isn’t rocket science. The requirement for a promoter statement has been a core part of our electoral law since 1977, and something every party should be complying with out of habit. Failing to do so is a basic failure of political competence. After all, if you can’t publish a fucking ad properly, how do you expect us to believe you can run the country? Sadly, I don’t think Labour will acknowledge that failure and commit to fixing it. Based on their past performance, we’ll be treated to more arrogant whining instead.
The Police should be able to decide on these breaches quickly. I have heard a whisper that the Police will delay any decisions on electoral law breaches until after the election, so they are not seem to be interfering with the election.
I hope this is not true, as it would be quite wrong to let political considerations interfere with the law.  If the Police have adopted this attitude, it will actually encourage more and more people to break the electoral laws, if they know there is no chance of charges being laid before the election.

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