A tweet by Labour leader David Cunliffe on Saturday, the day of the Christchurch East by-election, has been referred to police.
Cunliffe published a message on his Twitter profile urging Christchurch East residents to vote for Labour candidate Poto Williams.
“If you are resident in Christchurch East don’t forget to vote today – for Labour and Poto Williams!” he wrote.
Under Electoral Commission rules, no campaigning of any kind is allowed on election day.
The Electoral Commission announced this afternoon it had referred Cunliffe to the police saying it believed he had breached the Electoral Act.
It said Cunliffe had allegedly breached the act because the message “was a statement published on polling day advising, or intended, or likely to influence electors as to the candidate for whom they should or should not vote in the by-election”.
I understand serial litigant Graham McCready has announced that he will do a private prosecution, if the Police don’t prosecute. This will be very embarrassing as it is an open and shut case, and Cunliffe would I think have to plead guilty as there is no dispute he sent the tweet, or that the tweet broke the Act.