Thoughts on politics and life from a liberal perspective

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Clegg needs to act unilaterally on party funding - now

Iain Dale is spot on today about party funding following the Sunday Times Peter Cruddas "Cash 4 Cameron" scandal expose. There is indeed a golden opportunity for a party leader to seize the initiative on party funding.

Nick Clegg should be in prime position for this. The party already has a policy of capping political donations at £10,000. The problem has been getting agreement for this across the parties. Talks always founder mainly because the main two parties have deep vested interested in the status quo for various reasons.

Clegg should announce immediately that the Lib Dems will not accept any donations larger than £10K. The political wind is now clearly blowing in that sort of direction and this is a golden opportunity to lead by example. Were he to do this it would force the issue and either the other parties would have to follow suit or be exposed as all talk and no action. It would be a major campaigning issue.

If he tarries, Cameron has a long history of capitalising on the public mood and he has a much bigger pulpit to be able to make it seem like he is on top of this issue. Being "first to market" is the only advantage Clegg has.

There will be no better time than right now


Left Lib said...

The obvious question however is what impact would that have on the funding of the lib Dems, which exists on a shoestring in the first place?
The problem with this policy is that all the political parties would then be underfunded. Which is why this policy should be combined with support for more state funding.

nonny mouse said...

Nick Clegg needs to return the Michael Brown donation before he can take the lead on party finance:

Meanwhile, Labour have their own grotesque problems: