The latest Morgan face-to-face poll has Labor’s lead at 63.5-36.5 down from the record-breaking 65-35 at the previous such poll early in the month, but up from 61-39 at the phone poll conducted a fortnight ago. Other conversation starters:
Special Minister of State John Faulkner has announced a package of electoral reforms confirming moves to cut the campaign donation disclosure threshold to $1000 (which the Howard government outrageously lifted from $1500 to $10,000 in 2005), along with bans on donations from overseas companies and various other measures. It is also announced that the government will kick-start a green paper process to reform and modernise our electoral processes. The first part of this, to be released for discussion in July, will look at disclosure, funding and expenditure issues; the second, to be released in October, will examine a broader range of options aimed at strengthening other areas of our electoral laws.
Morris Iemma has taken talk of reforms to campaign donations a step further by suggesting they be banned altogether, perhaps in conjunction with caps on electoral spending. Jack Waterford of the Canberra Times presents the case against.
A big week for the New South Wales Liberal Party: charges laid against five over the Lindsay pamphlet outrage, rising star Scott Morrison deemed too civilised for membership of his local branch, and suggestions that Peter Phelps might emerge as a contender for the party’s state directorship. Would it be overdramatic to suggest that the forces of respectable conservatism in the state should abandon the whole rancid operation and start again from scratch?