Mar 062007

SEVERAL Federal Liberal MPs, including a former minister, are embroiled in a police investigation into alleged abuse of electoral allowances.

Hearing this issue aired on this morning’s news broadcasts hardly surprises Bannerman.

Regular readers will remember the post made December 14, 2006, and a follow-up the next day. It seems that a strong suspicion exists in the halls of Federal police investigations that three MP’s – Gary Hardgrave, Andrew Laming and Ross Vasta, Liberal pollies all – are under the gun for suspected rorting of federal printing and mail allowances.

In the case of Laming, despite all of his protestations to the contrary, Bannerman remains convinced that his Red-e-volinitiative, if it really exists as a volunteers non-profit organisation, is being used as a party political vehicle for promotion of Laming in particular and the Liberal Party in general. Note the following from the Red-e-vol website:

The service is designed, funded and administered by the Office of the Federal Member for Bowman.

Now, from Bannerman’s perspective, Laming is either supremely naive in his approach to the cross-pollination between his political ambitions and his concerns for societal cohesion; or he’s incredibly bold, daring and dismissive of the taxpayers who put him into office. Bannerman strongly suspects it’s a matter of 50/50. From the conversation held with Laming 15 December 2006, there is undoubtedly some relevance to the social interest issue, but also some distinct arrogance about what he can and cannot get away with as a Federal Member.

Bannerman will be very interested in following this issue. Interestingly, no-one from Howard’s office wanted to comment. Stay tuned.

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