Polling: Majority of Tasmanians Want ‘Good Government’ Reforms

New research from the Australia Institute Tasmania finds most Tasmanians (87%) want Truth in Political Advertising laws, and a ban on political donations by the gambling industry (73.3%). Four in five (80.1%) Tasmanians agree the Tasmanian Integrity Commission should undergo structural change so its design is improved and its existing powers, including holding full inquiries with public hearings, are utilised.

Key Findings:

  • Almost nine in ten (87%) Tasmanians agreed that Tasmania pass ‘truth in political advertising’ laws so that it is illegal for political parties and candidates to publish ads that are inaccurate and misleading, with only 5.1% disagreeing
  • Vast majority (73.3%) of Tasmanians support a ban on political donations by the gambling industry, with only 21.7% disagreeing.
  • Four in five (80.1%) Tasmanians agree the Tasmanian Integrity Commission should undergo structural change so its design is improved and its existing powers, including holding full inquiries with public hearings, are utilised, with only 8.7% disagreeing.

“Our research shows there is widespread community concern about the poor performance of the Tasmanian Integrity Commission and a clear message to improve its functioning so its existing powers, including holding full inquiries with public hearings, are utilised,” said Eloise Carr, director of the Australia Institute Tasmania.

“There is clear appetite from Tasmanians for the Government to create ‘truth in political advertising’ laws so that it is illegal for political parties and candidates to publish ads that are inaccurate and misleading.

“There has been increasing pressure for transparency on political donations since the 2018 election. The Government failed to meet its promise to introduce a donation disclosure regime before the next election. Tasmanians want to know who is funding their politicians when they go to the ballot box this Saturday and they don’t want it to be industries with vested interests.

“The community is crying out for better governance, all we need now is the political will to make it happen,” Ms Carr said.

The Australia Institute Tasmania research recommends a co-ordinated approach to reform across four key areas:

  • Strengthening the Tasmanian Integrity Commission
  • Introducing Truth in Political Advertising laws such as those in South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory
  • Adopting an Election Donations regime with a low disclosure threshold for disclosure in real time
  • Improving our Right to Information system

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