National is making a massive fuss over the NZ First Foundation. According to them it is shady, dishonest and smacks of corruption.

Meanwhile, they are running not one, but three Foundations of their own.

The National Foundation, which states its aim as

We have established the National Foundation to strengthen the financial future of the National Party. It will operate as a capital-protected fund. This means contributions will never be removed from the fund. Instead, they will be invested with the proceeds ensuring a stable and diverse revenue stream to support our activities, and the capital will continue to benefit our Party for the long term.

These activities will include not just our election campaigns, but also our Candidates’ College, the Dame Hilda Ross Foundation for the support of talented female candidates, and the Endurance Trust to support promising young leaders.

That sounds just like the NZ First Foundation’s aims and goals. They even think that Bill English is still the leader of National, which may come as a surprise to Simon Bridges.

Screenshot of National Foundation website

But National has introduced a rather interesting donation practice of their own, where donors can hide their donations by investing in “bricks”.

There are five levels from which to choose. Your gift at any level will also make you a part of the Foundation, a part of our future.

Legacy Donation

Level 1: $5 – $500

Written acknowledgement of your gift

Name recorded in the official National House Legacy donor register (you may choose anonymous if you wish)

Regular Foundation updates

Buy a Foundation Brick

Levels 2 – 4: $500+, $1000+, $5000+

All Level 1 benefits

Your brick ownership certificate

Invitations to National Foundation events

National House facilities privileges

Major Donor Honour Board

Level 5: $10,000 +

All Level 1 – 4 benefits

Inclusion on a high profile Major Donors Honours Board within National House

Potential sponsorship naming rights

For more information on the National Foundation or to discuss major donations please contact:

The people who donors are asked to contact are the president Peter Goodfellow, and the General Manager, Greg Hamilton. The trustees are Peter Goodfellow, Sir Don McKinnon, former president Judy Kirk, board member Roger Bridge, and the party’s lawyer Peter Kiely (who interestingly used to be a law partner of Brian Henry)

This trust is wholly controlled by senior party officials, and National runs their entire headquarters out of the building the Foundation owns and presumably pays the running costs of.

The upstairs area is the Party’s HQ, while the large downstairs function area will be the heart of the National Foundation, a place where National Foundation supporters will always be welcome.

I wonder who bought their document shredder? Who pays their internet connection? All of a sudden you can see that the whole media beat-up seems rather farcical when the National party does exactly the same thing and nothing is ever said.

Just like the NZ First Foundation.

So, why is the NZ First Foundation shady but National’s three trusts/foundations squeaky clean?

The answer, of course, is that the NZ First Foundation has as much right to exist as National’s own donation laundering schemes.

Thanks to Simon Bridges and Nick Smith’s efforts the focus will now be on National’s own donation laundering, and also their dodgy Chinese donors that are currently under investigation by the Serious Fraud Office.

If you believed that no other party does this, you can now feel assured that the National party does it too.