Government electoral law change priorities are amusing

amy adams 3

Amy Adams’ electoral law changes priorities are amusing.

Richard Harman reports:

Broadcasting Minister Amy Adams say legislation will be introduced into Parliament next week to make the TV campaign broadcast changes.

The Government will allocate $3.605 million to political parties to buy time on TV.

But that will be all the time they will be allowed to purchase.

They may also spend some of their allocation on on-line advertising though (confusingly) they will also additionally be able to spend their own money on extra on-line advertising.

Only TVNZ was obliged to broadcast the formal opening and closing broadcasts, and Ms Adams appear to have bought their argument that the lower audiences for the broadcasts deprived them of revenue. ?

“The addresses are an outdated format, and declining audience numbers show they are not effective at engaging voters,” she said.

The broadcasts began in 1963 when the-then three main parties (National, Labour, Social Credit) shared two hours on air. The broadcasts were mainly speeches.

Though cartoons and short films were introduced in the 1970s? to liven them up, they still featured the Leaders? formal; openings in town halls up and down the country like Labour Leader Bill Rowling?s opening in Christchurch in 1975.

By 2005, the speeches had turned into interviews with tape overlays. But the broadcasts remained focussed on the Leader speaking.

Well, that’s a relief. No more do we have to watch those stupid party political broadcasts.

But where is the commitment to seeing people and parties who breach electoral laws prosecuted?

In the past five elections, there have been countless examples of breaches of electoral law referred to Police by the Electoral Commission. Not a single one has resulted in a prosecution.

If breaches of electoral law aren’t punished then why do we even have the laws in the first place?

Colour me surprised that Amy Adams thinks removing election broadcasts is a higher priority than having our electoral laws enforced.


– Politik