More Transparency Needed on EU Political Funding Laws



European Elections and Campaign Finance: Show Us the Money
International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance


The author reviews the regulations governing political donations in European Union elections and argues there needs to be a consistent legal framework to ensure greater transparency and rebuild public trust in the EU.

He argues consistency is important because inadequate political donations regulations in any one EU member country can have implications for the standing of EU elections more generally.

He says that in more than half EU countries, no limits apply to the amount a candidate can receive from any donor and a number of EU states have no requirements for candidates to reveal their campaign finances.

This creates the risk that unregulated large donations can skew electoral competition and make candidates dependent on the agendas of those who donate large sums.

He argues that European-wide donation limits would help protect the EU parliament from the influence of special interests while encouraging a wider range of candidates to stand for elections.



Thumbnail image: European Parliament. By Diliff/Wikimedia

Samuel Jones

International IDEA

Published Date
May 21, 2014