Political contributions cut from $1,000 to $100

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Unionist
Political contributions cut from $1,000 to $100

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Unionist

[url=http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/private+political+donations+enacted/...$100 lid on private political donations enacted[/url]

Quote:

The Quebec government’s new bill reducing contributions to political parties came into force Tuesday.

Bill 2, passed by the National Assembly on Dec. 6, puts a $100 lid on private donations while increasing direct government funding to parties. The new rules also apply to independent candidates. [...]

The bill reduces the annual maximum an individual may give to a party or candidate, previously set at $1,000. It also abolishes the tax credit for political contributions.

In an election year, voters will have the right to contribute an additional $100, for a maximum of $200.

Under Quebec law, only voters are allowed to donate to a party; company, union and out-of-province funding are prohibited.

The government will make up the difference by funding political parties directly, making the campaign-finance bill revenue neutral [...].

I recall that Québec was the first jurisdiction in Canada to ban corporate and union donations and limit individual donations - that would have been during René Lévesque's first term in the late 70s.

There was lots of controversy when the Bill was tabled - including those who said that this went against Lévesque's legacy and would encourage illegal contributions, and those who said it would stifle the formation of new small parties:

[url=http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Macpherson+Drainville+bill+criticize... bill criticized by former Lévesque associates[/url]

 

KenS

What it tends STRONGLY to do is fossilize the financial 'standings' between the parties.

The only progressive benefit is to any EXISTING party that gets a wide and diffuse vote. And that is a VERY double eddged sword even for them. [Ask the national Green Party about that.]

It also amplifies an even bigger already huge advantage that governments have in doing blatantly political advertising. This was peanuts in Leveesque's day.

Next tiime out of power, the PQ is going to be royally hoisted on this petard.

KenS

My guess is that the PQ cannot resist totally stacking the deck for the here and now- the next several years.

Go for broke.

When/if it doesnt work and the worm turns, oh well.

Whatever Levesque had in mind, this has NOTHING to do with progressive public policy.

Do everything possible to bullet proof their institutionalization, come what may around sovereignty.

lagatta

It wouldn't seem to help Québec solidaire, as there are a few members (well, Amir, but he isn't the only one) who have probably made the $1000 contribution. Not jus specialist physicians, even professors and other people making a decent income (one I know at UQAM contributed quite a bit to that and to other causes, making quite a sacrifice). 

KenS

In my experience, in the short term, solidaire will probably benefit from this... loss of larger donors more than compensated for.

But no matter what the size and politics of the party- in my experience bare none- they all fairly quickly shift the whole way of doing things towards the incentive structure in force. Per voter subsidies makes life easy in the short term, even foir solidaire. But then...

Meanwhile, the PQ juggernaut, with govt spending.....

Unionist

Ummm, would anyone like to speculate as to why this bill was adopted unanimously?

ETA: To start you off, and in reply particularly to lagatta's concerns, here is the blog post by Françoise David expressing her satisfaction at the open and collaborative method whereby the bill was presented, discussed, amended, and ultimately attracted consensus and unanimity:

[url=http://www.quebecsolidaire.net/francoise-david/2012/12/ma-premiere-fois/]Ma première fois[/url]

 

NorthReport

Election campaigns are a huge waste of time, energy, and resources.

If u don't already know what a political party represents by the time election time rolls around u must have u're head buried in the sand.

I like this legislation and wish the other provinces and the federales would adopt it as well.

KenS

Yes, I might have asked how this bill came to be.

I presume solidaire would not just SAY they thought it a collaborative process, because it was 'good optics' or whatever.

 

What I'd say then- even after the fact- is, be careful what you wish for. Every small party has eagerly jumped at the prospect of emphasis on per vote funding. I do not think a single one has actually benefited.

Michelle

I think this is a great idea!  I wish we'd do it in Ontario, and federally too.

If a political party can't get a wide swath of people to give them a hundred bucks during a political campaign, then they're obviously not reaching enough people with their message.  It's no better for progressive parties to have a few rich donors carrying the finances than it is for Conservative parties being carried by rich corporate bosses.