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Taxpayer Funding of Political Parties a Step Too Far

Taxpayer Funding of Political Parties a Step Too Far

“Taxing New Zealanders to subsidise political parties would weaken our democracy,” says Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union.

The Union is hitting back at Labour Party leader David Cunliffe’s suggestion that it’s time to consider publicly-funded elections.

“Suggesting that tax dollars from those who don’t support political parties should be used to promote them is outrageous,” says Mr Williams.

"Mr Cunliffe argues that public funding of political parties is about ‘fairness’. But democracy is about accountability. Even if it was about fairness, how is it fair to tax Kiwis to fund Mr Cunliffe’s, or anyone else’s, political efforts?"

"Politicians having to justify their work to supporters, members, and donors is healthy. Public funding would give a huge advantage to the established political parties. It professionalises politics and stamps on the grass roots."

"The vast majority of donations made to political parties are small. That is a good thing. It means politicians and party bosses are accountable to many."

ENDS

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