Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Tories Squeeze Private Political Loans

Okay, so this isn't really news but it hasn't received a ton of coverage so I'm going to talk about it. On April 28th the Tories introduced bill C-19 which would, if passed, tighten the grip on one of the few easy ways left to finance a political campaign: private loans. The bill permits candidates to get any loan they want from a bank but makes the rule a lot tougher if they want to get the money privately. Loans would be limited to the annual donation restrictions and the lenders information would be made public. The bill also mandates that all loans be paid back within 3 years (this applies to leadership races, Liberal Leadership '06 candidates). After that the loans are counted as donations. The bill would essentially just extend current rules to apply to loans. The only strange part of the bill is continuing to allow bank loans. If loans are donations, aren't bank loans corporate donations? I suppose the logic is that a lot of the private loans are done at virtually no interest by family, friends and supporters.

This bill, like the earlier attempt to kill public political financing, is political through and through. The Tories fundraise far more effectively than their opponents and therefore rely less heavily on loans. Debt has become a fairly standard operating procedure for modern political candidates, this bill could change that. It's a bill that may be more important than it appears. Of course, it may never be passed. I for one will keep an eye on it.


ridenrain said...

Such legislation is unnecessary if elections Canada did it's job enforcing the rules.
When are those Liberal candidates going to pay off those loans?

Gene Rayburn said...

when are the Cons going to stop ripping us off and flaunting their contempt for democracy with the IN/Out scheme Ridenrain?

Oh my rock put a huge hole in your glass house! Not much glass left for your strawman talking points Rr.

CanadianSense said...

O/T Are we getting a Poll roundup for May? thanks.


If Elections Canada did not try to 'level the playing field' through GST overpayment forgiveness program, the loans extensions the LPOC may have been bankrupted or unable to secure a loan, line of credit for twenty million for the next campaign in the short term.

Elections Canada did the same thing with Social Credit Party in the 1970's allowing them to remain on the ballot although they did not meet the criteria.

Perception of neutrality is very important and like the CBC, EC is creating a serious problem for bias.

Wealthy individuals should not be allowed to circumvent the limits of small donations for their political party.

Unpaid loans should disqualify the candidate until paid in full and the party should have the amount deducted from their allowance in the next campaign.

If this violation took place on the CPC, another tax funded Inquiry-Witchunt would be screeched for the next two months in Parliament and our media.

Gene Rayburn said...

There goes CS again, never able to stay on topic.

Lame. Try discussing the point for a change.

Aaron Ginsberg said...

While I disagree that Elections Canada is as a whole is biased, it is disgraceful that the Liberal Party has not been able to pay off these leadership debts three and a half years on.

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