Friday, June 06, 2014

Banks should resign

Since yesterday's verdict there has been a flood of calls for John Banks to do the decent thing and resign from Parliament. I'd like to add my voice to that call. While Banks has managed to prevent a conviction from being entered for the moment (thus allowing him to hide behind that technicality and cling to his seat and $147,000 salary for two more months), he has unquestionably been found guilty by a court of a serious criminal offence - an offence so serious that he will automatically be expelled if (when, because a discharge is surely unthinkable) that conviction is finally entered. Compounding that is that the offence is against electoral law: he deliberately tried to hide the identity of a donor, in an effort to keep their influence (and his conflicts) secret from the public. His continued presence in Parliament taints it with corruption, and brings the House and our democracy into disrepute. He should do the decent thing and resign.