Time for Albanese to lead on transparency and truth reforms


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Today, the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters (JSCEM) tabled its final recommendations on reforms to how elections are conducted and funded. 

The #OurDemocracy campaign, a broad civil society coalition advocating to end excessive corporate influence in federal politics, urges the Prime Minister to now take the lead and ensure crucial reforms for transparency and truth in advertising are in place before the next election.

#OurDemocracy released polling today (see Appendix) showing that Australians believe the government is prioritising the views of big business over ordinary people and want the Albanese Government to close secret donation loopholes. 

Clancy Moore, CEO of Transparency International Australia says: “In 2022, 40% of the money reported received by the major parties was hidden as dark money.  What’s more, 3 out of 4 Australians believe the government is more influenced by the views of big business than those of ordinary people. So with the JSCEM final report tabled today, the Labor Government must now urgently pass comprehensive transparency reforms before the next election.”

Ray Yoshida, Campaigner at Australian Democracy Network says: “This is the next big test on integrity for Prime Minister Albanese.”

“The committee’s report suggests the government ‘give consideration’ to amending the definition of gift. Amending this definition is a crucial integrity measure to defend against the dark money flooding our political system.”

“Australians are tired of secretive donation loopholes which allow for industries like tobacco, gambling and fossil fuel companies with deep pockets to buy a seat at the table with decision makers.”

Mark Zirnsak, Senior Social Justice Advocate and Uniting Church Australia (Synod of Victoria and Tasmania) says: “We welcome the recommendation for the introduction of truth in political advertising laws. While political parties and candidates may offer the community different perspectives on important issues that voters are considering, no party or candidate should be allowed to win an election on the basis of outright lies to hoodwink people to vote for them or not vote for an opponent.”

Appendix: View polling results.

Journalists with enquiries should contact Isabella Morand.