Political donations

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An integrated reform blueprint for federal and state politics could comprise eight elements. Chris Wilson/Flickr

Eight ways to clean up money in Australian politics

Political funding in Australia is governed by different rules for state (some of which do not require disclosure) and federal governments. And both levels suffer significant weaknesses.
Politicians often argue lobbying is going to happen anyway, so there’s little harm in demanding donations from those seeking their time. Shutterstock

What do businesses get in return for their political donations?

Our political donations disclosure regime is so opaque, we don’t really know who's paying how much and what they get in return. But the lengths players go to hide donations gives cause for suspicion.
Australia’s two major political parties are highly dependent on contributions from business by the standards of other rich democracies. AAP/Lukas Coch

No bribes please, we’re corrupt Australians!

Australia’s political finance system is corrupt – but not because of bribery, or indeed any substantial quid pro quo.
Bill Shorten will on Monday announce a number of proposals aimed at stamping out union corruption. Tracey Nearmy/AAP

Shorten pledges to mobilise ASIC against union corruption

Tougher penalties and a central role for the Australian Securities and Investments Commission are key parts of Labor's policy to crack down on union corruption.
The O'Farrell government had a law limiting political donations struck down by the High Court. AAP/Dan Himbrechts

Follow the money: the difficult path to political donation reform

It is unfortunate that it is only scandals and the perception of corruption or criminal involvement that prompt moves to reform Australia’s political finance regime.

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