Turnbull among donors to failed Yes campaign

High-profile donors to the Voice referendum include former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and mining billionaire Clive Palmer.
High-profile donors to the Voice referendum

The individuals and organisations behind the largest donations to the Voice referendum’s ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ campaigns have been named by the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC).

The First Nations Voice to Parliament referendum failed on 14 October.

Nearly six months on, the AEC has released the details of the Yes and No campaigns’ biggest donors — donations above $15,200. Smaller donations weren’t published.

High-profile donors to the Voice referendum

Former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull donated $50,000 to the Yes campaign.

Australian mining billionaire Clive Palmer spent $1.9 million to campaign against the Voice, through his company Mineralogy.

The Paul Ramsay Foundation, a philanthropic organisation, gave over $7 million to the Yes campaign.

The Yes campaign

The major Yes campaigns received a combined total of over $60 million in donations.

Most of this funding – $47 million – went to the Australians for Indigenous Constitutional Recognition fundraising body which headed the Yes23 campaign — in support of a constitutionally enshrined Indigenous Voice.

The No campaign

The Australians for Unity body – the major group behind the No campaign – received $11 million in donations. This was the most given to a No group.

Advance Australia, another high-profile No group, received $1.3 million in donations, but spent a total of $10 million.

High-profile corporate donors

The Yes campaign was supported by several large donations from high-profile companies including Qantas, Woolworths and CommBank.

Mining giant BHP donated $2 million to the Yes campaign as part of their support for the Voice.

Former BHP CEO Marius Kloppers went against the position for his previous employers, donating $100,000 to the No campaign.

Donation concerns

In November, a Parliamentary committee recommended an overhaul of political donations over transparency concerns.

The committee recommended political donations be published in real-time.

They also called for donations of over $1,000 to be made public. The Federal Government said it plans to implement this recommendation.

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