Rodney Hide has been referred to the police for breaching the Electoral Finance Act by wearing his yellow jacket with the Act logo but without an authorisation.
If his jacket breached the EFA then why didn’t Metiria Turei’s bathing suit?:
I wrote a letter to the editor after seeing this in the ODT saying she was breaching the act by wearing a wetsuit emblazoned with the Green logo without authorisation. She wrote a letter back saying she wasn’t so I emailed the Electoral Commission to ask which of us was correct.
The initial reply said:
You suggest that a party logo by itself constitutes an election advertisement.
An party advertisement is
‘any form of words or graphics or both that can reasonably be regarded as encouraging or persuading voters to do either or both of the following:
(a) to vote for the party (whether or not the name of the party is stated):
(b) not to vote for another party (whether or not the name of the party is stated)’
It is not clear to me that a party logo, by itself, meets this definition.
When I saw a news item saying the commission was considering whether a balloon with a Labour Party logo constituted an advertisement I emailed back suggesting that if a logo on a balloon was going to count then a logo on a wetsuit must too, especially when the story beside the photo included this quote:
“ Mrs Turie said …. She chose not to compete in a wetsuit, preferring a swimsuit emblazoned with the Green Logo. “It’s always good to get your message out there.” …. She said competing not only helped her promote the Green message throughout the country…”
In light of the new development I will email again.