Developer donor ban set to cost LNP $1m
Queensland Labor’s proposed ban on property developer donations will slash about $1 million from the Liberal National Party’s campaign war chest, even before the prohibition becomes law.
The LNP wrote to its campaign offices on Thursday night warning them to stop accepting money from developers, just hours after Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk introduced the legislation and confirmed it would be retrospective from that day.
Senior LNP sources estimated the potential loss in cash to be about $1m, far more than the likely hit to the Labor Party from its loss of income from developers.
“That’s why it’s been made retrospective,” an LNP source said. “To give them an advantage leading to the next election. We’ll be $1m down, in round numbers.”
A Labor strategist said Labor received about one-third of the amount of developer donations compared with the LNP. But the LNP is confident the proposed ban will not ensnare the party’s in-house investment arm Altum because it is a property investor, not a property developer.
The bill has been sent to a parliamentary committee, which is due to report back on November 27, making it unlikely it will pass the hung parliament this year.
Griffith University political commentator Paul Williams said the legislation would hurt the LNP disproportionately.
“I agree it’s clever politics to make it retrospective,” Dr Williams said. “The only thing that could muddy the perception the government is acting altruistically is a suggestion from the LNP that it should ban union donations as well.”