04 May 2014

No Campaign Finance Reform This Year

With a vote of 9-1, Green Party Cllr. Adriane Carr's motion for campaign finance reform was defeated at City Council this past week. Surprise? Not really as all 9 dissenting votes came from Vision Vancouver and the NPA--the two parties that benefit most from unlimited campaign donations and lax rules on donation disclosure.

Vision Vancouver in their usual insulting manner, declared Carr's motion as "naive" and "dangerous". Both Vision and the NPA talked of lack of trust and the inability to enforce voluntary rules. Kerry Jang, who seems incapable of adding anything intelligent or useful to any debate, added his usual demeaning and childish contribution talking of "scout’s honour" and "pinky promise".

If the two largest civic political parties cannot be trusted to follow volunteer finance rules, how then can we trust them with our tax dollars?

The truth is that the NPA and Vision Vancouver have the most to lose. All those millions of dollars from their deep pocketed friends in the development community could be lost. Elections couldn't be bought any more by groups who have the most to gain from city decisions. Both the NPA and Vision spent millions of dollars on their last campaign and chances are they will spend even more this year to keep their places at City Hall.

Despite their claims that they have been calling for Victoria to change the rules for years, the proof of their commitment to reform was shown with the 9-1 vote. Isn't it time that honesty and integrity were returned to our civic politics? More than ever this vote shows where each of the parties stands. Come November the people of Vancouver will have the opportunity to make real changes at 12th and Cambie. Will it be four more years of the same old cynical politics or will the people take back their city government?

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