The Funding of UK political parties

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  • The Funding of UK political parties
    • Methods of funding
      • Collecting various membership fees
      • Holding fundraising events
      • Donations from individuals or organisations
      • Self-financing candidates
      • Grants from the Electoral Commission
    • Controversy of party funding
      • Larger parties are at a huge advantage
      • Corruption caused by reliance on donations
      • Donors may seek political return from their investment
    • Regulation of party finances
      • The Electoral Commission monitors and regulates party funding
      • The Conservatives main income source is from wealthy donors
      • Labour receives large funds from the trade union movement
    • Alternative funding structures & restrictions
      • Impose restrictions on individual donations to bodies
      • Impose tight spending restrictions
      • Restrict types of donations
      • Replace funding with state grants
      • Short Money
        • Bias towards larger parties
        • Distributed to opposition parties to fund parliamentary work
        • Distributed on how many seats and votes parties won at previous election
      • Should the state fund political parties?
        • Arguments infavour
          • Ends corruption of donations
          • Reduce advantage of larger parties
          • Improve democracy, ensuring wider participation
        • Arguments against
          • Difficult to distribute funding
          • Parties may lose independence
          • State funding may lead to excessive party regulation

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