By Marcus Lush
The frenzy around John Banks and Kim Dotcom has not died down.
It is hard to predict how this will end; police are notoriously slow at investigating and processing breaches of electoral law – which is a shame as it is the very core of democracy’s legitimacy.
And even if Banks goes, parliaments make up is not really altered.
Last night I would have said he stays – today I would say it is 50-50.
Despite all of this, the real damage is not to National. The real damage is to democracy.
I think democracy is affected in two clear ways: Politics' reputation is damaged. What good people would want to run for parliament, when you can see the shenanigans involved? And also, is it any surprise, after behaviour like this, that less and less people vote or are interested in voting? No, I don’t think it is surprising at all.
If any good can come from this, let's hope that the laws around funding at a local body and central level are tightened so they are clear and this sort of thing cannot happen again without prosecution.
I mean for goodness sake, how can a donation be anonymous if you know where it came from?