Kirk LaPointe and Gregor Robertson refuse to disclose campaign contributions before election

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      The mayoral candidates for the two wealthiest Vancouver political parties have each refused to disclose who's funding their party before the November 15 election.

      That's despite the NPA's Kirk LaPointe bluntly declaring at a Langara College debate today that he is beholden to "no one".

      He also claimed that transparency was the policy hill he's prepared to die on in his campaign against Vision Vancouver's Gregor Robertson.

      When I asked LaPointe why he wouldn't demonstrate transparency by revealing campaign contributors prior to voting day, he responded that it was a "valid question". 

      Then the NPA mayoral candidate said that his opponents aren't doing this, leaving the distinct impression that there will be no NPA disclosures until Vision Vancouver steps forward first.

      "The question should be them, not us," LaPointe said.

      This prompted me to ask Robertson if he would disclose the identity of his party's donors before the election.

      Robertson explained that his party isn't required to do so under the law. In other words, I was out of luck.

      "My understanding is that Vision Vancouver is working within the laws as they exist today," Robertson stated.

      Provincial legislation requires municipal candidates to reveal campaign contributors within 120 days after a municipal election.

      This means, of course, that when Vancouverites vote next month, they won't know the source of millions of dollars that will be spent convincing them to cast ballots for Robertson or LaPointe.

      It takes big money to be elected mayor of Vancouver.
      Stephen Hui

      A sensible solution would be to vote for candidates who won't be raising oodles of money and keeping it secret.

      You can read the other mayoral candidates' profiles on the city's website.

      After all, if the two major parties are going to remain this secretive in the Internet era, how can they be trusted to provide open and accountable government after voting day?



      Go Meena Go!

      Oct 22, 2014 at 8:06pm

      Charlie asks, "How can they be trusted to provide open and accountable government after voting day?" They can't be trusted. Any fool can come to that conclusion and that's why COPE is the only viable option. I doubt Meena would put up with an autocratic government and a Vision Vancouver city manager that gets paid more than the prime minister of Canada.

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      Oct 22, 2014 at 8:57pm

      so mr Transparent Kirk Lapointe isn't so transparent after all

      just big talk from Kirk Lapointe

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      Felix the Cat

      Oct 22, 2014 at 10:12pm

      charlie you have my vote for best election coverage in the city. The one thing lacking everywhere is more coverage of Bob Kasting, by far the most interesting and promising candidate for mayor this election.

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      Pete Quily

      Oct 22, 2014 at 10:46pm

      They both should disclose and COPE, VanGreens & Cedar too, even though their take is much smaller. We citizens deserve real transparency and to know who's renting access to our politicians & how much.

      And it's crucial that ALL vancouver political parties disclose all the #darkmoney they've accumulated in non election years that legally they don't have to tell voters because the #bccronies party is also funded by speculators and real estate developers too and prefer corruption and don't mandate disclosure.

      So some developer could give NPA or Vision $200,000 in a non election year, #darkmoney & nothing in an election year and we citizen would never know that when the npa or vision politician is voting on their project. That is legal but it is so wrong and so sleazy

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      Oct 23, 2014 at 3:43am

      GREAT QUESTION, and we MUST change the law, it's quite ridiculous that they do not reveal their funding sources until 120 days after the election.

      BUT, to blame Kirk is not fair... either ALL have to declare it, or it's a political game for Vision to blame NPA on X/Y funding, so I totally understand.

      However, we know ONE THING for sure... Vision is THE DEVELOPER's choice (ex: $25K lunch by Bob Rennie) and the Union (where secret recording revealed it), and basically it's Developers funding Vision vs. other interests and public for other parties...

      Meena was impressive I thought, the independents should get out, too bad Bob didn't run for council!

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      400 ppm

      Oct 23, 2014 at 7:24am

      Imagine that. A capitalist vs a capitalist wanabee. And they won't talk about money. All brought to you by Representative Democracy™

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      Oct 23, 2014 at 7:33am

      This is why you shouldn't vote for either Vision or the NPA. Without knowing their funding sources, you don't know who is influencing them. Well, actually we can make a pretty good guess: developers, developers, developers, developers, developers .....

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      ursa minor

      Oct 23, 2014 at 8:21am

      Between this non-debate and the prohibition of East Vancouver advance polls, it's really starting to look like the NPA/Vision establishment is really afraid of a revitalized COPE. Hopefully the electorate votes without fear next month.

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      Tommy Khang

      Oct 23, 2014 at 10:35am

      It's all or none - that's how the game is played, no single party is going to reveal their donors unless it is deemed mandatory by law, doing so voluntarily allows for others to exploit the fact. Every political group is influenced by special interests, even COPE - don't kid yourself into thinking otherwise.