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You are not above the law, Malcolm – show us your paperwork

In both the Senate and the media, questions are being asked about Malcolm Turnbull’s decision to gift almost half a billion dollars to a few mates to save the reef.

And they should be.

Much as the government may think it is a law unto itself and that the Treasury is its own personal piggy bank, there is actually legislation that covers Commonwealth Grants.

The Commonwealth Grants Rules and Guidelines 2017 (CGRGs) came into effect at the end of August last year and is administered by the Department of Finance.

This instrument outlines the mandatory requirements and better practice principles for all non-corporate Commonwealth entities and third parties that undertake grant administration on behalf of the Commonwealth, including Ministers, accountable authorities and officials.

Requirements that must be complied with are denoted by the use of the term must in the CGRGs.

Officials must provide written advice to Ministers, where Ministers exercise the role of an approver. This advice must, at a minimum:

  1. explicitly state that the spending proposal being considered for approval is a ‘grant’;
  2. provide information on the applicable requirements of the PGPA Act and Rule and the CGRGs (particularly any ministerial reporting obligations), including the legal authority for the grant;
  3. outline the application and selection process followed, including the selection criteria, that were used to select potential grantees; and
  4. include the merits of the proposed grant or grants relative to the grant opportunity guidelines and the key principle of achieving value with relevant money.

Requirements for Ministers

In addition to the requirements under the PGPA Act, where the proposed expenditure relates to a grant or group of grants, the Minister:

  1. must not approve the grant without first receiving written advice from officials on the merits of the proposed grant or group of grants. That advice must meet the requirements of the CGRGs and
  2. must record, in writing, the basis for the approval relative to the grant opportunity guidelines and the key principle of achieving value with relevant money.

Sooooo Malcolm, show us your paperwork.  And while we’re at it, let’s see Mitch’s paperwork for gifting Rupert $30 million.


44 comments

  1. Florence Howarth

    I am confused as what the money is for.

  2. Kaye Lee

    Florence,

    I would suggest it was so Malcolm could look like he was doing something about the reef by giving money to people who won’t upset the status quo. Imagine if that money had been given to James Cook University who are leading the research.

    “The money was not sought by the foundation, there was no tender, grant approval or allocation process in relation to the grant and the meeting was held in secret, without any public servants participating. No due diligence was conducted on the foundation. The performance indicators for the grant — or more accurately, handout — haven’t yet been determined.”

    https://www.crikey.com.au/2018/08/02/malcolm-utegate-turnbull-no-stranger-to-peculiar-grants/

  3. Kaye Lee

    The timing was also interesting as it came a few days after Fairfax revealed that Commonwealth funding to arrest declining water quality on the reef had dropped by $58 million over the next five years.

    They also speculated it was designed “to shore up support in key Queensland seats ahead of an election in the next year, as the Coalition tries to balance environmental concerns with its pro-mining jobs focus through the Adani coal mine.”

    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/federal-budget-half-a-billion-dollars-for-the-great-barrier-reef-20180428-p4zc6p.html

  4. Alpo

    The political noose is tightening around the Coalition’s political neck….

  5. New England Cocky

    Now now Kaye Lee, you know that Muddles considers himself “perfect in every way”, just like in the Roger Miller song, so why should he be worried by a little bit of legislation designed to make politician accountable to the voters???

  6. Kaye Lee

    It infuriates me that, with all the journalists and politicians asking questions, I haven’t heard one bring up the relevant legislatory requirements. And where is Mathias Cormann who, in a statement accompanying the guidelines, says “To assist with delivering outcomes for the Australian public, the Government remains committed to simplifying and improving the transparency of grants administration.”

    Uh huh….they certainly simplified it. Improving transparency? Not so much.

  7. etnorb

    Of course he would be above the law! He is just another obscenely wealthy bloody “privileged” Liberal! He thinks he does not answer to anyone, as do ALL the libs!

  8. Zathras

    This brings back memories of the Libs and their howling and demands for the resignation of the ALP’s Ros Kelly over her “Sports Rorts” whiteboard affair.

    I guess what goes around comes around after all – especially in politics if you wait long enough.

  9. Kaye Lee

    Not to mention Utegate which also didn’t go well for Malcolm.

  10. Josephus

    Isn’t there a legal authority here who can deem this illegal and demand repayment, plus maybe a fat fine? Attorney General? Governor General? High Court? Who? Since when is the man above the law? Go for it Four Corners.

  11. Phil

    The perception of corruption within the Turnbull administration heightens with every passing day. Holding onto power and divvying up the spoils of office with party financiers seems the only aspect of typically conservative governance the LNP is adroit at.

    Damned good point Kaye – where is the media in this? Why does it fall to a small independent outlet to ask the relevant questions?

    With channel 9 subsuming Fairfax into its crass entertainment machine, Australian media has all but disappeared as a force for scrutinising authority. Just as the conservatives like it.

    What a bloody mess Australia is in and yet, still, there are voters who will support the theft of their own democracy and the erosion of our social compact.

  12. Kaye Lee

    Josephus,

    The department of finance are the first port of call. They are the responsible department for ensuring the requirements for grants are followed. Cormann deserves pressure about this too.

    There is talk of Labor inviting Frydenberg and Turnbull to attend the Senate hearings to be questioned but they don’t have to comply being from the HoR. But Cormann can’t refuse being a Senator AND the relevant Minister re grants. Labor are going after the wrong people.

  13. Pete Petrass

    My guess is that this particular foundation’s goal will be working out the best way to APPEAR to keep the reef safe whilst ensuring their big business owners can still go about their ways and earn big bucks with their coal and mines and stuff.
    I see some large executive bonuses coming. And with only half dozen people and all those billions it would not be hard to misplace a couple, perhaps one or two may just accidentally be lost into Gautam’s pockets?

  14. David

    @ Florence, confusing the public looks like part of the ‘charity’ plan. About 10 percent of the $443M has already been vaporized by admin in a few months. That might be how some charities work these days, burn up large quantities of public funds quickly before the public wakes up and makes a protest, I don’t know. The remaining $400M odd? Given the financial expertise of some on the GBRF board members, maybe you could toy with the idea there will be a setting up of various honey traps to entice investment, honey traps that will turn a tidy profit for a few early venture capitalists in the know, honey traps that will burn a hole in the pocket of late-comers. Future Fund?

  15. Kaye Lee

    We should also remember that the 2014 budget cut $2.8 million from the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and $7.8 million over the next four years from the Australian Institute of Marine Science and a whopping $111.4 million over the next four years from the CSIRO.

    “..criticism from the Australian Academy of Science has followed the funding’s announcement saying it ‘does little’ to address the reef’s mounting risks. More specifically, it also called out its ‘small-scale restoration projects’ including ‘underwater fans, coral sunscreen and coral gardens’.

    ‘The Academy is also concerned about the redirection of funding from experienced and well-established Commonwealth agencies such as the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS), CSIRO, and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA), in favour of a non-governmental organisation,’ the Australian Academy of Science told the Senate inquiry into the funding deal.”

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6004479/Great-Barrier-Reef-research-grant-given-foundation-run-oil-airline-execs.html

  16. Kaye Lee

    Oh geeze….this just keeps getting worse.

    I wondered why the money was being paid upfront all in one go. These things are usually funded over a number of years. I just found out the answer….

    Department of the Environment and Energy documents show that under the terms of the deal, a “direct payment of $22.5 million” drawn from the funding will be paid to the foundation to cover administration costs. This would be “supplemented by the interest earned on the funding”, which could run into the tens of millions of dollars, depending on how the money is invested.

    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/cherry-picked-charity-to-pocket-at-least-22-5-million-in-taxpayer-funding-for-reef-20180715-p4zrne.html

  17. guest

    Kaye, why is it I am reminded of unexplained fat grants paid to the Murdoch stable in recent years?

  18. fiona

    Are vigilantes allowed to holiday in the Cayman’s? Just asking for a friend

  19. Doug

    Referring to New England Cocky’s post August 3, 2018 at 12:02 pm

    “Now now Kaye Lee, you know that Muddles considers himself “perfect in every way”, just like in the Roger Miller song,”
    A good pick up there NEC. If anybody is looking to hear the song it can be found as “Oh Lord It Is Hard To Be Humble” sung by Mac Davis.

  20. Henry Rodrigues

    Just like when Turdball gifted uncle Murdoch’s nephew $10m for some hare brained scheme to make the clouds rain us during the drought. The modus operandi of these creeps are straight out of Goldman Sach’s banker’s tricks handbook. Seems the only lessons Turdball learnt well and remembers and practices, are the crooked ones. More like the sleaziest man in the room. Abbott’s ‘creativity’ only went’ as far as fake rolex watches

  21. Kaye Lee

    From Jagger’s link….

    The United States Studies Centre, a foreign policy think tank with close links to the Turnbull and Murdoch families, has been given $12 million by the federal government.

    The think tank, based at Sydney University, was established by the American Australian Association to promote the US alliance, train students, develop policy and provide an intellectual counterweight to American critics in Australian universities.

    The grant, which was announced on [22/7], will be provided through the AAA, which was co-founded by Rupert Murdoch’s father, Sir Keith Murdoch.

    Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s wife, Lucy Turnbull, is the United States Studies Centre’s “patron”.

    Their son-in-law, James Brown, was the think tank’s research director from 2015 until a few months ago [and] remains a non-resident fellow of the think tank.

    The structure of the US Studies Centre was decided in the dining room on the third floor of the headquarters of News Corp in New York City in 2006. Prime minister John Howard promised $25 million start-up capital.”

    Looks like they are going to use the time they have left slinging money to mates.

    The real scientific research bodies must be screaming obscenities….

  22. diannaart

    Kaye Lee

    The Great Barrier Reef Game of Cards.

    Apart from the obvious ploy to appear as if the LNP is doing something about the GBR, another achievement of this grant has been to pay for silence.

    Not a single mention of climate change impact on the warming of oceans. Nor of the run-off from intensive agricultural practices, fossil fuel fracking, tree-felling, mangrove clearing and much, much more – Great Barrier Reef Foundation, you won’t hear it here.

  23. corvus boreus

    Regarding the $30,000,000.00 unconditionally granted to Newscorp to ‘promote female sports’.
    Given the non-existent conditions placed on Fifield’s gift, and the hard-earned Murdoch reputation for peddling slime and sleaze, I wouldn’t be surprised if the flip-side political donation manifested as a jelly-wrestling event on Foxtel pay-per-view.

  24. Kaye Lee

    The GrantConnect site says, of the GBRF grant:

    Value (AUD): $487,633,300.00 (GST inclusive where applicable)
    Purpose: The project will deliver activities which are consistent with the purposes of the Reef Trust Special Account Determination to achieve the Reef Trust Objectives and assist to protect the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.
    Confidentiality – Contract: Yes
    Confidentiality Reason(s) – Contract: Other : Aspects of the Co-Financing Plan and the Communication and Stakeholder Engagement Plan

    https://www.grants.gov.au/?event=public.GA.show&GAUUID=7649DB83-A532-0FBB-C637BB3E55BC3F0E

    Can someone explain to me why this should be “confidential”? Are underwater matters off-limits now too? Does that last line mean they won’t tell us who is donating to them? Or does it mean we won’t see how much interest they are earning and keeping?

    From twitter…

    “A 6 month deposit of $444 million at 3.2% would earn $7.14 million. That’s $40,000 per day…”

    Why do they add GST to grants? Rupert was given $33 million. Presumably he then gave them $3 million back just like this crowd will give $43 million back. Seems silly to me.

  25. Belotte

    I like the focus Kristina Keneally is bringing with her tweets about the GBRF Slush Fund.
    Last week in Senate “In Monday’s hearings, I asked the Great Barrier Reef Foundation which banks were holding the $444m of public money and earning interest — and they took it on notice!
    Is that what you mean by “transparent”, Prime Minister?”

  26. Kaye Lee

    Yes, Keneally is a real asset to the parliament.

    I sure hope Labor stays squeaky clean when they get in…..I’m allowed to be an optimist, right?

    At least they will be more transparent, hopefully?

    Do I sound desperate? Because I am. Desperate for some humanity, some integrity, some decency, some authenticity, some transparency, some accountability, some honesty. I can happily live without charisma, slogans and zingers.

  27. Svein

    As much as I dislike Winston Churchill’s polotics , he has a few quotes that are amusing, and unfortunately true ie; “you only need speak to the average voter for 20 minutes to doubt the value of democracy “ or words to that effect.
    With the ownership of big media as it is and has always been, including Churchill’s use of propaganda which can be regarded as normal unfortunately, we have the situation where Turnbull is doing very well in the polls as preferred PM. The vast majority of people in Australia have been shafted by the likes of him and his party for over 200 years and unfortunately by those of the ALP that have kept it well and truely to the right.
    If our politicians had only followed the policies of Norway and their fellow Scandinavian Countries .

  28. paul walter

    Love the answer to Florence Howarth, early. Your blood really is worth bottling.

  29. John L

    Absolute, total, corruption! In plain sight, blatant, and basically ignored by the MSM.
    Malcolm saying “f#ck you” to the people of Australia!

  30. Bella of Sandringham

    Kaye thanks for all your brilliant articles.

    Reading this piece has reminded me of the Utegate affair. From memory Turnbull claimed that PM Rudd had provided a dodgy $5000 grant to a car salesman mate, in exchange for the free use of a second hand ute, He mustered up a high degree of confected indignant outrage when he called on Rudd to resign.

    I smelt a big rat when it became known that the case against Rudd was based on fake emails written by a supposedly mentally ill public servant, and that Eric Abetz had acted as Turnbull’s go between with Godwin Grech. I’m convinced that Abetz, Abbott etc etc were so desperate to prevent the establishment of an emissions trading scheme that they set Turnbull up. A few weeks later he lost the party leadership.

    This $430 million folly could well hasten the end of his p.m.ship. With Labor, and many of his own backbenchers, piling on against him he’ll become increasingly angry and agitated. Proving once again that Turnbull is not only unstable but the prime example of a political truism – there are no limits to the sense of entitlement displayed by many LNP MPs, in their quest to look after themselves and their masters in the IPA / the top end of town.

    Like you I live in hope that a Shorten Labor government will emulate Julia Gillard and do a decent job of looking after the 99% / the rest of us!

  31. corvus boreus

    Kaye Lee,
    My reading is that the most likely ‘reason’ for Turnbull giving his exec mates the $443,000,000 with the idea that they might use some of it to try out some schemes for privatized coral preserves, basically gated tourist park/refuges wherein a few areas of the reef that have survived comparatively intact would be zoned off, and the contained coral populations assistance-maintained through processes like the application of light-filtration elements and the deployment of fan-cooling (I wish I was joking).
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-12-07/reef-fans-to-be-deployed-to-protect-coral-from-bleaching/9234710)

    Meanwhile,
    on lands next-door to the ailing reef, more trees are felled to make way for more beef.
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/science/2018-05-25/why-is-land-clearing-bad-news-for-the-great-barrier-reef/9783420

    Cheer you up any?

  32. Kyran

    In an ABC article online by a senior political reporter, Louise Yaxley, the ‘grant’ is consistently referred to as a ‘donation’. Given the tone and content of the article, according to this ‘political journalist’, this is a ‘nothing to see here’ issue.
    Notwithstanding your article refers specifically to the terms and conditions normally associated with the ‘grants’ process, it is worthwhile looking at how consistent this government has been.
    Remember when the potty mouthed GHunt was first appointed the shadow environment minister by Abbott, back in 2009?

    http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/greg-hunt-discusses-shadow-climate-policy/1168972

    Nobody could really understand how he could have written a thesis on the need for a ‘carbon pricing mechanism’ then do an about face and adopt Abbott’s ‘Direct Inaction’ policy. He went on to establish, in 2013, a new definition for meaningful research that far surpassed the standards previously accepted as reasonable (that science, evidence and fact stuff his boss referred to as ‘crap’).
    “Environment Minister Greg Hunt has hosed down suggestions of a link between climate change and increased bushfire intensity, saying he had ”looked up what Wikipedia” said and it was clear that bushfires in Australia were frequent events that had occurred during hotter months since before European settlement.
    His comments come as scientists, environment groups and politicians have raised concerns, in the wake of massive bushfires in New South Wales, that the increasing extreme weather events are linked to climate change.”

    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/greg-hunt-uses-wikipedia-research-to-dismiss-links-between-climate-change-and-bushfires-20131023-2w1w5.html

    Who could forget his first ‘brief’ by his boss, to spend millions on lobbying obscure members of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee to keep the GBR OFF the endangered areas list? We will never, ever know the cost of flying him and his departmental minions around the world to obscure countries in the pursuit of his lobbying, let alone the grants (or is that donations?) issued through DFAT to these minnow countries to garner their votes. In any event, they were successful by 2015.

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/jul/02/great-barrier-reef-australia-says-unesco-decision-shows-it-is-a-world-leader

    It is only fitting that the potty mouthed little GHunt went on to receive the ‘Bestest Environment Minister in the whole wide Galaxy’ as voted by the fossil fuelled government of the Middle East. Ah well, they got rid of him. He was moved on from the unimportant environment ministry to the lesser important ministry of health. That’ll learn him!
    The tourist industry associated with the GBR is valued at around $60bill per annum. It is only fair to give preponderance to the mining sector. After all, it generates millions to government coffers in mining royalties, taxation, community investment, all sorts of Kumbaya shit. Ok, that was fiction. But the mining industry does generate secure jobs for ex-government ministers when they hit their electoral ‘use by’ date. Poor bastards couldn’t possibly survive on their ministerial pensions and benefits.
    As other commenters have noted, we skate past the tree clearing that has ramped up in both Queensland and NSW. We don’t pay any attention to the damage caused by tailing dams currently leaching (Queensland Nickel, Adani and other Galilee Basin enterprises (How goes it Gina? Is Barnaby paying off yet?) Heck, Canavan is still trying to work out how to get donations (or is that grants?) through NAIF without anyone noticing.
    Whilst this current donation may be open to scrutiny through the Australian National Audit Office, will they look at the underpinning economic modelling done by Turnbull, Frydenburg and their cronies? It is simple mathematics. Of all the corporate members of this venerable charity, what is the cumulative total of their ‘donations’ to the LNP? It is a transfer of wealth that is all too common in Australia. Corporate donor gifts to political party. Political party wins office. Political party reimburses said donation with a taxpayer funded donation, devoid of justification or evidence.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/aug/01/no-environment-officials-at-turnbull-meeting-about-443m-reef-grant-to-tiny-charity

    It used to be called money laundering. Now it’s called politics, a la Australia, 2018. Nah, nothing to see here.
    Thank you Ms Lee and commenters. Take care

  33. Rhonda

    Given the blatant nature of this filthy deal and the corruption trail – I think that if this alone doesn’t sink the bastards, then maybe we don’t deserve our GBR. The damage from this mob is a f#cking pile on!

  34. Jim Davis

    Kaye Lee – don’t JCU just sack academics who come up with data to suggest that particular narrative is a crock of shit? Not a good call there.

  35. Terence Mills

    Jim

    What Professor Ridd was saying was that the university were guilty of inadequate peer review on matters concerning the Great Barrier Reef ; The matter is now before the courts I understand but, some of the facts are available online.

    Ridd did leave the university but, due to a non-disclosure agreement, neither party can comment on whether he was fired or resigned.

    Ridd has been embraced by the likes of the Murdoch press, Alan Jones and the shock jockery of Foxtel/Sky and the climate denialism of the IPA : he made a fundamental mistake in going to these people if he was trying to remain objective and impartial.

    “In August last year, Professor Ridd was interviewed by Alan Jones on Sky News about a chapter in the book Climate Change: The Facts 2017 published by the Institute of Public Affairs. In his chapter, Professor Ridd wrote: “Policy science regarding the Great Barrier Reef is almost never checked.”

    “Over the next few years, the Australian Government will spend more than a billion dollars on the Great Barrier Reef; the costs to industry could far exceed this. Yet the keystone research papers have not been subjected to proper scrutiny. Instead, there is a total reliance on the demonstrably inadequate peer review process.”

    The JCU spokesman said the university “strongly supports academic freedom”.

    “JCU’s academic staff members are free to pursue critical and open inquiry and participate in public debate and express opinions about issues and ideas related to their respective field of competence, in accordance with the University’s Enterprise Agreement and Code of Conduct,” the spokesperson said.

    “The Code of Conduct is the standard by which we conduct ourselves towards others and perform our professional duties on behalf of the University, to the highest standards of ethical conduct.

    “All staff members must comply with the Code of Conduct. No employee is immune from their responsibilities to treat people with respect and to maintain professional standards of communication.”

    His claims of inadequate peer review are surely a matter of essential academic rigour and it seems that this is where the university and Ridd differ. I don’t have enough information on this to comment with any authority. However, you do raise a valid point for discussion and broader community input is certainly welcome to shine a light on what has become yet another front for those who deny climate change and wish to claim a hero – as I understand it, whether climate change is impacting the GBR is not something that Ridd has denied, he merely critiques the level of academic peer review on published material.

    PS : I have no connections with JCU or any of the parties.

  36. Kaye Lee

    I have some concerns about how JCU has handled the Ridd case but I have zero respect for Ridd. This paragraph alone should be enough to show why.

    “Thanks to lots of people including Anthony Watts, Jennifer Marohasy, Jo Nova, Benny Peiser (GWPF), Willie Soon for spreading the word. Also a huge thanks to the IPA for helping with the organisation,” Ridd said in his GoFundMe campaign.

    You couldn’t pick a less credible group of supporters than that lot.

    Include Andrew Bolt, Alan Jones, Terry McCrann, the Australian, Sky News, James Delingpole, the Heartland Institute…..

    What JCU should have done is tear him to shreds academically – his opinion about the reef is crap and highly influenced by the fossil fuel companies who fund his research. Have a look at at the consultancy work he does – for example….

    2012
    Coal Terminal Project at Dudgeon Point (QLD)

    Coal Terminal Expansion Project Abbot Point (QLD)

    Coal Terminal Expansion Project at Hay Point (QLD)

    Shipping Terminal Expansion Project Weipa (QLD)

    https://web.archive.org/web/20180321230426/https://www.jcu.edu.au/marine-geophysics-laboratory/services/consulting

    It is in his interest to say dredging and climate change don’t hurt the reef if he wants his funding to continue

  37. diannaart

    Australia has excellent, if under-funded, science based bodies such as the CSIRO with more power-packed neurons per boffin than to be found in 97% of politicians.

    Turnbull couldn’t spend our taxes a little more wisely?

    Of course not, WTF was I thinking?

  38. Geena Phoenix

    And people want to know why and how I’m voting NO CONFIDENCE next federal election.
    Black felt pen strike a line through every candidate from just outside the left of each candidates box all the way through the entire line of text and most importantly after striking every candidate out at the bottom of the papers write NO SUITABLE CANDIDATE TO FOLLOW MY WILL. Felt pens cannot be erased, turned into preferential votes and is legal under our constitution. As our names get ticked off on collection of ballot papers when there’s too many of these votes done this way our Governor General Peter Cosgrove will have no other option but to remove every candidate from our parliament so we get a new lot in and continue voting this way until we have a truly honest government that actually serves our will as it should legally do.

  39. Kaye Lee

    Geena,

    I understand your frustration, but I have worked as an electoral officer. Whilst the person who looks at, and quickly discards, your ballot paper may get a giggle, your protest will not be recorded in any way differently to those who don’t number the ballots correctly. You will just be one of the oh too many “informals”.

    We need better people to run for parliament and we need to support good ones who put their hand up.

    Saying none of them are good enough may be true, but it doesn’t help. We have to write to our politicians and make our voices heard whenever we can. The GG won’t save us but ground swells of public opinion can.

    They can’t keep lying to us if we keep spreading the truth until enough of us say enough.

  40. corvus boreus

    Geena Phoenix,
    The correct term is an ‘informal vote’.
    This applies whether you write ‘NO SUITABLE CANDIDATE’, draw dicks or leave the sheet entirely blank.
    The only effect of such non-votes is that they are noted in AEC statistics (informal ballots are usually roughly around 5%) .

    The idea that a specific number or percentage of informal votes in a general election will invalidate the results and force a re-ballot seems to be one of those wish-think furphies that keeps doing the rounds, as, despite research, I have been unable to locate any such constitutional clause, nor, despite requests, ever been provided with any links to verifying legislature.

    I can understand the disgruntlement that makes casting an informal vote seem like the most palatable option, but you should not do so thinking that it is a stratagem that can make an iota of difference to the outcome of an election.

  41. DrakeN

    Corvus and Kaye,

    Perhaps including a box entitled “None of the above” at the bottom of the page might be worthwhile.
    If the number of them exceeded the votes for all of the candidates, a re-run might be appropriate with none of the previous ones entitled to nominate.

  42. Kaye Lee

    We still come back to encouraging decent people to run and then supporting them. Someone has to do it.

  43. B.BINGHAM

    Potential LNP slush fund and the money used by LNP here is confused with being there to do with as they please.
    The outfit receiving this sling is questionable when you consider the contradictory background of the people involved.The website is slick and impressive. Astroturfing, go fund Adani.

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