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Media release from the Taxpayers' Union

MEDIA RELEASE

TAXPAYER FUNDING OF POLITICAL PARTIES A STEP TOO FAR

12 MAY 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

“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

ENQUIRIES:

Jordan Williams
021 762 542

NOTES TO EDITORS:

The New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union is a non-partisan activist group, dedicated to being the voice for Kiwi taxpayers in the corridors of power. It’s here to fight government waste and make sure New Zealanders get value for money from their tax dollar.

The Taxpayers’ Union operates a 24 hour media line for comment on taxpayer issues. Representatives are available on (04) 282 0302.

High resolution images and logos are available on request or online at http://www.taxpayers.org.nz/pages/resources

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