The Herald reports:
New Labour MP Stuart Nash was bankrolled to the tune of $4000 a month by political backers for more than a year leading up to last year’s general election.
Mr Nash’s $99,000 in candidate donations meant his warchest ranked only behind Hone Harawira’s $105,000 courtesy of the Kim Dotcom and his Internet Party as being the country’s best-funded candidate.
The returns showed Mr Nash received $36,000 from Caniwi Capital Partners and $31,000 from Andrew Kelly, mostly paid in monthly instalments dating from June 2013.
Mr Nash also received $5000 from rich lister Sir Robert Jones, $9000 from Parnell accountant Lynch Phibbs and $18,000 from various branches of the Labour Party.
Mr Nash said the two main backers for his ultimately successful race for the Napier elector seat were long-term friends who “believed in what I was doing”.
I’ve got no problems with a candidate being bankrolled by friends, effectively on their payroll so he could campaign full-time.
But this sort of information should be disclosed pre-election, not post-election, so it can be scrutinised then.
Current electoral law only requires donations of $30,000 (for parties) to be disclosed at the time they are made (within 10 working days), while lesser limits apply for disclosure after the election.
I think that any donation that meets the disclosure limit should be disclosed within say a month of being made, not disclosed after an election. Expenses of course must wait until after an elections, but donations do not have to.