Interim Leader John Fraser introduces bill to close Doug Ford’s fundraising loophole

Ending Doug Ford’s Double Dip

April 29, 2019

Today, MPP Fraser will introduce a private member’s bill, The Leadership Fundraising Loophole 2019, amending the Election Finances Act to ensure that any donations made to a leadership campaign following the leadership vote must only be used to pay off campaign debt

“Premier Ford and his party are abusing the campaign finance rules. The intent of the law is to allow leadership candidates to continue raising money after the leadership vote as a way to pay down their campaign debts, not to double up on annual limit for political donations. The Premier knows this. It’s wrong and needs to be corrected,” said John Fraser, MPP for Ottawa South.

Currently any contributions to a debt-free leadership campaign must be turned over to the central party.

Since May 8, 2018, when his leadership campaign was declared debt free, Doug Ford has raised over half a million dollars despite having no outstanding campaign debt. By continuing to raise funds, donors are able to contribute more than the annual limit for party donations.

For example, in the first three months of 2019, $221,600 was donated to Doug Ford’s leadership campaign. Of the 151 donors, 28 also made donations to Conservative Party, doubling their individual annual contribution limit of $1600.

The bill aims to ensure fairness and transparency so that political parties do not circumvent the donation limits and double up on annual party donations from individual donors.

“When you pay down your leadership debt, that’s when your participation in the race is over. No party should use a loophole in the legislation to dodge the limits on political donations,” said Fraser, “ Doug Ford needs to do three things to make this right: One, stop fundraising using his leadership campaign; Two, return those donations that put people over the limits; and three, pass this simple piece of legislation.”


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