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HUSH MONEY: Disclosure campaigner Andrew Wilkie refuses to name any of his political donors

wilkiesIndependent federal MP Andrew Wilkie has strong views on political donations as the Hobart Mercury reported this week:

Denison independent MP and pokies reform activist Andrew Wilkie supported calls to change the way political donations are declared.”There is a clear need for reform of legislation regarding political donations because donations risk buying outcomes as surely as brown paper bags full of cash do…”

Prompted by the MP’s remarks, VEXNEWS approached the federal MP to encourage him to personally implement the same high standards of disclosure for which he argues there is a “clear need.”

He argues that campaign donations can secure outcomes from politicians as if they were bribes. An outrageous and unsupported claim but one that will be invariably snapped up by journos who should know better. Perhaps the MP judges others by his own standards, so we figured we should ask him who’s been donating to him and seeing whether that’s had any effect on his decisions. We asked Mr Wilkie:

Further to your statements about the need for greater disclosure of political donations and so on, I write to ask you to provide us with the full list of donors to your federal and state campaigns in 2010.

Could you please break the list down in the following way:
Name, Address, Contact Phone Number, Amount

What measures did you put in place to establish the bona fides of individual donors? Were any of them associated with other political parties?

We wanted to see if the feisty Taswegian was willing to eat his own cooking. We feared we’d have to praise him if he did disclose the identity of the 82 donors to his federal campaign and unknown number of contributors to his state campaign. They contributed many tens of thousands of dollars so we thought an appeal to the former whistleblower’s previous enthusiasm for letting the world know things might succeed.

But, alas, no. He wasn’t giving up the secret identity of his donor cabal. He did respond though in a very timely manner so we’ll give him credit for that and extra credit for shamelessness. Wilkie exclusively told VEXNEWS:

The Federal donor disclosure threshold in Australia is $11,500.  While I support a lowering of that threshold and other reforms, donors have made their contributions under the existing law and I have no right to breach their privacy by revealing their personal information.

So essentially what he’s saying is the donors he relied on expected their identities to be kept secret, that was part of the deal, the implicit bargain between candidate and cash provider to candidate. We can respect his view but it cannot be reconciled with his public statements and positioning.

You’ll note he didn’t answer our question about how he established whether his 82 federal campaign donors and unknown number of state campaign donors were fit and proper persons to be slopping out the loot to him. It’s Tassie, so perhaps he knew them all or they were cousins.

We asked the question – also ignored – about whether other political parties helped him because it was rumoured at the time that several Liberal donors had also backed him in to help the maverick candidate pinch one of Labor’s traditionally safest seats.

Yes, I am choosy about who I accept donations from and would never accept donations from a gambling organisation.

Like our spiritual mentor, channel 7’s Mark Riley, we haven’t met an impertinent question we didn’t like so we also asked:

Also, are you willing to take donations from developers, banks or mining companies? If not, why not?

No reply on that one, giving Clive Palmer and the hyper-profitable Commonwealth Bank a clear run at the Office of National Assessments turncoat turned member of the Parliament’s Intelligence Committee, should they desire that.

Again channeling Mark Riley, we inquired:

You appear to have made a profit on your federal campaign. What did you do with the money?


I understand that you urged donors to donate to “Andrew Wilkie” personally, did you set up a separate campaign account or just bank the donations in your own bank account?

He sort of replied, in a non-reply kind of reply:

I did finish ahead financially at the 2010 Federal election.  But, that was my fourth election campaign and on balance I’m seriously out of pocket.

We’ll take that as polite code for, I pocketed the money myself, thank you very much. Nice work if you can get it.

We also asked whether he’d disclosed his state election expenses and revenue and he insisted that independent candidates in Tasmania don’t have to. Those familiar with the matter in Hobart say that while there are no state disclosure laws, they are roped in by the federal Electoral Act and should be disclosing under that. We’re not sure of the legal situation on that one but the moral one is clear enough: if Andrew Wilkie thinks that a much tougher donation regime ought exist, shouldn’t he be living up to those same standards himself, whether the law strictly demands it or not.

Before his next pious pronouncement, he would do well to consider that and just hand over the list of donors to us before we find it another way.


Comments are disallowed for this post.

  1. I wouldn’t blame Wilkie on this one. My opinion is that either donations should be totally banned or else let everybody have it.

    The new rules in NSW have been designed only to keep Independents and smaller parties out.

    Sorry VEXNEWS but I don’t agree with you on this one!

    Posted by Patriot | February 10, 2011, 10:44
  2. The Lib’s would feel a little ripped off,if they had donated.

    Posted by Earnest Ernie | February 10, 2011, 10:52
  3. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Kester Takayama, Gluckman and Dean Winter, Stephen Reid. Stephen Reid said: @vexnews asks Andrew Wilkie to practice what he preaches #politas #auspol http://tinyurl.com/5rjsger […]

    Posted by Tweets that mention VEXNEWS 2011© | HUSH MONEY: Disclosure campaigner Andrew Wilkie refuses to name any of his political donors -- Topsy.com | February 10, 2011, 12:57
  4. Did Wilkie receive any funds from gaming interests?
    Or from cigarette interests?

    Posted by Kylie French | February 10, 2011, 14:00
  5. Andy, well done. Wilkie’s ‘high standards’ are no higher than anybody else.
    Lets hope this is the end of his pious pronouncements.

    Posted by Bob Dillon | February 10, 2011, 14:04
  6. Of course he’s a stinkin’ hypocrite. You shoulda aksed him how and why he parted company with Bob Brownstuff.

    Posted by coz | February 10, 2011, 15:37
  7. Slow down Timmy Wilson. Melbourne Ports AGM last week. State Council elections … Kroger/Costello grouping 22…. Baillieu/David Davis/Malcolm Fraser grouping…Nil. Nil!!!!!!! Not one. Backlash ahoy against Mad Ted over Mad Mike Kapell’s staffing star chamber. No move by the party indians to Mad Ted! Ship of State has turned away.

    Posted by wallace | February 10, 2011, 16:55
  8. Wallace – It’s Big Ted not Mad. Ted!

    Lt Col (retired) Andrew Wilkie is a good MP.

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 10, 2011, 17:46
  9. The more I learn about Wilkie the more untrustworthy he seems. Very quick to wave a moralistic finger at others (accusing the Opposition of ‘selling their souls’) but applying more relaxed standards to his own behaviour.
    He’s “choosy” about whose money he accepts but his political affiliations range rather more freely: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew_Wilkie#Political_career

    Posted by Gregoryno6 | February 10, 2011, 18:08
  10. Wilkie was only elected because the Tasmanian ALP nominated a left wing dud. If they had selected a more reasonable candidate the ALP would have won this seat.

    Posted by Sandy Taggert | February 10, 2011, 18:20
  11. My guess is Andrew will convert himself back to the Liberal Party at some point in the future. It’s purely a theory that he needs to show his colours independently first. Afterall he began life as a 1983 era Duntroon officer cadet who was a member of the Liberals back then. The Liberal Candidate he ran against in the 2010 Federal election was his fellow Duntroon classmate, (so) no doubt preferences from LIBs flowed his way on the day. Jocelyn Newmann’s (snr LIB Tas) son Cameron (exCAPT) is the Mayor of Brisbane in charge of the recent QLD floods cleanup, and doing rather brilliantly too I might add – Cameron incidentally was also a 1983 Duntroon Class mate of, the currently TAS based independent, Andrew Wilkie.

    Posted by Mary-Ann Martinek | February 10, 2011, 18:31
  12. Sandy – you are probably correct but they picked the dud. Who was it as I am in Victoria so did not hear much about Tasmania except for Sen Brown, Wilkie and ALP MP’s attempting suicide or retiring with depression

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 10, 2011, 19:32
  13. “Lt Col (retired) Andrew Wilkie is a good MP.”

    He should be in jail for breaches of National Security. As a LTCOL, he was a pompous ass. Andrew Wilkie has floor to ceiling mirros in his house. It takes him two hours to get dressed every morning. Mrs Palmer keeps him occupied.

    Posted by Futureproof | February 10, 2011, 19:35
  14. Mary-Ann – I think his name is Campbell Newman (Lord Mayor of Brisbane). Perhaps Cameron is another son – they are RC’s.

    His late father Kevin Newman was my first CO in 5RAR in 1973. Peter Cosgrove was the Adjutant. Kevin was later promoted and posted to Tasmania where he stood against then Defence Minister Lance Barnard and beat him.

    The Bass by-election was the beginning of the end of Gough Whitlam’s government.

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 10, 2011, 19:38
  15. Mary-Ann – not sure if Wilkie would re-join the Libs (I wouldn’t either)as he was treated pretty poorly when he outed John Howard as an Iraq war criminal. Howard and other senior Liberals were also pretty ruthless with Wilkie in the media too.

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 10, 2011, 19:45
  16. CAPT Jackson (Retd), drop the Post Noms. Three quarters of the Defence force have got them. Maybe you are making up for the fact that you were a pogue and not a shooter. Futureproof 29 years ARA.

    Posted by Futureproof | February 10, 2011, 20:00
  17. Futureproof – Its a screen name but the rank, names and medals are real and the medals are really mine.

    As I said earlier the Iraq war criminal Peter Costello has an AC after his name now which only goes to prove some Australia Day honours are given to anyone.

    Another phoney who had one was Rodney Adler (HIH) and Allan Bond (Bond Corp).

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 10, 2011, 21:42
  18. Why do so many who claim ADF service hide behind fake screen names. Futureproof, Real, Jazz, etc etc. All phonies and the same person I think.

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 10, 2011, 21:47
  19. If you want to see a picture on me wearing my medals, RSL badge check out Paul Austins article from The Age dated 13 Sep 07 in the lead up to the Albert Park District by-election. The story was called “Attack on ALP over vote card”.

    Andrew might want to put on VEXNEWS but I doubt if The Age would be co-operative.

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 10, 2011, 21:58
  20. My p!ssweak medals for just turning up to work for twenty years – are even more impressive than Peter Costello’s AC!


    Posted by Captain Wacko Jacko (Active) WANKER | February 10, 2011, 22:08
  21. PS I don like da Joos. Da PLO is ace.

    Posted by Captain (Retard) Wacko Jacko (Active) WANKER | February 10, 2011, 22:13
  22. Andrew – I think the mental hospital has given a computer to the schizophrenia ward. They are all hear. Real, Jazz, Wacko, Futureproof etc. It’s time for their lobotomy

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 10, 2011, 22:44
  23. Looks like the end of a sturdy military career, gored to death by a heap of queer gnomes.

    Posted by Bollocks | February 10, 2011, 23:21
  24. Time to close down this unedifying commentary. Captain and little people, surrender and give the rest of us a break!

    Posted by Bollocks | February 10, 2011, 23:27
  25. There is a Zionist conspiracy against me.

    Posted by Captain (Retard) Wacko Jacko (Active) WANKER | February 10, 2011, 23:43
  26. Shut up! You nutter!

    Posted by Bollocks | February 11, 2011, 0:43
  27. Please sir, can my comment come out of the moderation zone sir?

    Posted by Gregoryno6 | February 11, 2011, 11:51
  28. Captain Jackson retired – your “war” service sounds like Rifle Company Butterworth. If you had been on a two way range, perhaps you would have an AASM and ICB.

    Posted by Futureproof | February 11, 2011, 13:52
  29. My apologies, Adrian is correct as it is ‘Campbell’ not Cameron Newmann who is the exCAPT and current Mayor of Brisbane and 1983 Duntroony classmate of Tas IND Andrew Wilkie.

    Posted by Mary-Ann Martinek | February 11, 2011, 15:51
  30. Futurepoof – given I said I was at Butterworth in an earlier comment I aplord you research. And yeap no ICB either as no shots were fired between Mar-Jun 1975 but it still entitled me and the whole rifle coy to the ASM (SE Asia) as layed down by the Howard government, I think. The Malaysian actually won that conflict against the CT unlike our defeat in Vietnam, Somalia and probably Afghanistan.

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 11, 2011, 15:54
  31. Thanks Mary-Ann as you can see I am under seige from the fake Army service Israel lobby

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 11, 2011, 15:56
  32. Era 1983 at Duntroon was historically interesting, Walkley Winner Andrew Rule, then AGE now HWT, exposed the bastardisation events of Duntroon 1983 which means Andrew Wilkie also saw those events too. His whistleblower-ing began with Iraq/Howard events or did it begin alot earlier, in 1983.

    Posted by Mary-Ann Martinek | February 11, 2011, 16:01
  33. Hi Adrian, I met Chiam Topol when he visited back in 1998 and he had great things to say about our Australian military personnel especially of our Lighthorsemen (Topol saw as a boy) ride into Palestine on magnificent Walers wearing the famous Slouch Hat and flying emus plumes, and that’s coming from a Palestinian singing talent who was playing the main character in Fiddler on the Roof. Needless to say a Slouch Hat was given to Topol by a retired Brig from RSL HQ at Anzac House.

    Posted by Mary-Ann Martinek | February 11, 2011, 16:09
  34. CAPT Jackson, you rose to the dizzy heights of CAPT. Congratulations. Even Mary-Ann reached Major.

    Posted by Futureproof | February 11, 2011, 16:13
  35. Yeap and I got paid every fortnight for 23 years and in that time bought 3 properties – all payed off too. Thank you taxpayers. I am a millionaire two fold now

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 11, 2011, 17:09
  36. Hi Mary-Ann – was Topol that old. Then again “Fiddler on the Roof” was filmed in the 1960’s. I have been to Sinai as far as El Arish.

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 11, 2011, 17:16
  37. Captain Jackson, I believe Topol has sadly passed on, however I urge you to audition for “Fiddler on the Loose”, you are a natural for the part.

    Posted by Real | February 11, 2011, 18:21
  38. Bystanders following this commentary should receive medals for BEING BORED TO DEATH by comments so asinine and tiresome as to defy belief. For God’s sake -SHADUP!

    Posted by Bollocks | February 11, 2011, 23:26
  39. Capt. Adrian and Lilleputian attackers – go and start your own blog where you can rubbish each other night and day. You are all timewasting twits. Eff Off!

    Posted by Bollocks | February 11, 2011, 23:39
  40. Bollocks off Ballicks.

    Posted by Futureproof | February 12, 2011, 12:55
  41. hi Real, that is very sad if Topol has passed on. He was 64 I think in 1998 when he was in Melbourne playing lead in Fiddler on the Roof, and we have a rare video of him as a special guest where he sings the Soldiers Song. Truly would be sad if he has passed on, hope not, but sounds like you are more up to date than I am.

    Posted by Mary-Ann Martinek | February 14, 2011, 17:09
  42. Hi Mary-Ann – if Topol as a boy saw the ALH in Palestine during WW1 then he would have to have been born in around 1910. If he was 64 in 1998 he would have been born in 1934 which does not fit the time lines.

    Posted by Captain (Retired) Adrian Jackson, ASM (SE Asia), DFSM & Clasp, ADM | February 14, 2011, 18:35
  43. Ah Daniel Lewis very solly can’t help you, there is not enough to build on.

    Posted by Professor Maku Dong Long | February 14, 2011, 18:48
  44. I want all of you to stand for political office. I want clean, intelligent, sensible, worldly, warm, encompassed in social conscience individuals to do it for Australia. Not you? Then don’t write this shit.

    Posted by Jenny | February 20, 2011, 21:01
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