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BC  

Donations rhetoric heats up

A new ad from the provincial NDP is focusing on alleged corruption within the BC Liberal Party, looking particularly at money Premier Christy Clark received as a party fundraiser.

The advertisement, posted to the BC NDP's Facebook page, says Clark received $300,000 as a "second salary" from the party.

"She's $300,000 richer thanks to her wealthy donors," the ad states. "And now, shady corporate donations to the BC Liberals have prompted an RCMP investigation."

The ad characterizes the BC Liberal Party as "bought and paid for" through corporate donations.

The issue of party donations has been an important issue in B.C. politics heading into the election.

As well, an RCMP investigation into party fundraising practices began following a Globe and Mail investigation. It alleged lobbyists were making donations on behalf of clients, without properly identifying where the money was coming from, breaking two party fundraising laws in B.C.

Penticton MLA Dan Ashton with the BC Liberals says the ad unfairly attacks the premier, who he says works for the money she receives from the party.

"She's an incredibly hard working lady ... for everybody in the province to ensure that this carries on being what we are right now, number one," Ashton said. "A lot of that credit goes to the premier and her drive, and her cabinet and caucus to ensure that it carries on."

Ashton says it's up to the premier to accept or not accept money from the party, but he's not sure where the ad gets the $300,000 figure from.

"I've never heard $300,000, so I'm assuming they're extrapolating that over a period of time, but I've never heard that figure; I've heard up to $50,000 a year," he said. "Over the last few weeks, I've noticed this a lot, that there's a lot of extrapolating that goes on with certain comments coming from the opposition."

He adds that the BC Liberals aren't alone in taking money from wealthy sponsors, pointing to union donations heading to the NDP.

"You live in a glass house, you better not throw rocks," Ashton said.



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