The Electoral Commission report into Tory election spending is out. Here’s what you need to know:
- Tories fined £70,000
- £104,765 missing from 2015 election return
- Another £118,124 not reported or reported incorrectly
- A further 81 payments to the value of £52,924 missing
- Registered Tory treasurer and former Tory party CEO, now CFO, Simon Day committed three contraventions under section 41 and two offences under section 82(4)(b) of PPERA
- Day committed an offence in relation to spending in South Thanet in 2015
- Tories overspent in Newark, Rochester & Strood and Clacton by-elections in 2014
The Tories admit fault: “This is the first time the Conservative Party has been fined for a reporting error. We regret that and will continue to keep our internal processes under review to ensure this does not happen again”. This means that Labour, LibDems and the Tories have all had maximum fines for breaching electoral laws in 2015.
Guido’s take is that the Tories will probably get away with just fines for the by-election over-spends in Clacton, Rochester & Strood and Newark. South Thanet however looks likely to be re-run. Eighth time lucky for Nige?