Monday, May 22, 2006

Electoral reform

DPF wraps up his series on the police's ineffectual investigation into Labour's overspending at the last election with some recommendations to ensure that this never happens again. Among them a dramatic increase in the maximum penalties for corrupt and illegal practices (which are currently simply laughable), amending the Electoral Act to allow parties to be held corporately liable, rather than the blame having to be pinned on any specific individual, and extending the time limit to allow a real investigation rather than the joke we saw. Oh, and removing the police from the process, and instead putting prosecution decisions in the hands of a revamped Electoral Office. These are all sound recommendations, and I would very much like to see them enacted. While the ideal would be to see broader reform to introduce greater transparency into electoral funding and entrench MMP (and the Maori seats while we're at it, simply on the basis that such things shouldn't be subject to random change without properly consulting the public), each of these vital reforms can be implemented in isolation, and in the absence of a public outcry screaming for serious electoral reform, it may be easier to do so.

So, who's going to bring the Member's Bill then...?


As it so happened I was at Parliament today and ran into an MP, and asked them if they would sponsor a private member's bill on electoral reform and they agreed.

So I will start work, with feedback through blogs, on drafting one which will plug the main loopholes, yet is not so ambitious that it can be delayed easily.

Posted by David Farrar : 5/23/2006 03:27:00 PM

Excellent news. Who's the patsy?

Posted by Idiot/Savant : 5/23/2006 03:39:00 PM