Labour’s claim that Prime Minister John Key has breached the electoral laws is a childish stunt to try and divert attention from their frequent and serious breaches of the rules, ACT New Zealand Parliamentary Leader John Boscawen said today
The Labour Party has filed a complaint with the Electoral Commission arguing that the National Party broke the law when John Key hosted a one hour segment on Radio Live. Labour claims the show constitutes an unauthorised election advertisement despite National following the Commission’s recommendation not to discuss politics.
“It’s a bit rich for Labour to be pointing the finger as their approach to the electoral law has been one of complete arrogance. Their actions show that they believe the law applies to everyone but themselves,” Mr Boscawen said.
“Just last week the Auckland Central candidate, Jacinda Ardern, deliberately ignored official advice from the Auckland City Council, putting up her billboards too early and making them too large. This is just one in a long list of breaches for Labour which includes being referred to the police when they sent out thousands of flyers without correct authorisation statements on them and again when their campaign signs were found to breach the law for the exact same reason.
“Labour’s breaches have been serious and frequent - at best showing a complete ignorance of the rules or at worst a deliberate disregard for the law. However, rather than being contrite over their law-breaking Labour MP Damien O’Connor instead attacked the Electoral Commission saying ‘the EC needs to pull their heads in. This is not the 1930s in Europe.’
“The ACT Party has long campaigned against the over-prescriptive law because it hinders freedom of speech and is too complicated. However, given that it is the law, all Parties should seek to stay within the rules and this is particularly true of the major parties that should be setting the example. Labour should be embarrassed,” Mr Boscawen said.