Wednesday, November 12, 2003


USA Today says that public financing of political campaigns has not created the level playing field intended. An Australian reader thinks that the Pauline Hanson affair gives a similar lesson:

"An interesting aspect of the whole Hanson affair that has not been highlighted is what it says about public funding of election campaigns. When this 'reform' was mooted in the late 70s and 80s, it was heavily pushed as a way to create a "level playing field" between the big parties and smaller players. The reality, as the Hanson case has shown, is that it has created a legal minefield upon which small players need to tread with caution. The tacticians of the big parties are more than willing to use the necessary funding rules to harass and bring down competitors. Another great leftist reform has been shown to be a joke."


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