While we may wish it otherwise, political campaigns cost substantial sums of money. In the past, most of those funds came from corporations, law firms and unions, along with substantial donations from a relatively small number of quite wealthy individuals. Thankfully, that era has passed (here in Canada at least), dramatically reducing the opportunities for corruption and influence peddling. The down side from the perspective of riding associations like ours is that we now need to work much harder to raise smaller donations from a larger number of local individual donors.
In this past election, we appear to have been significantly outspent by our NDP opponents, and that difference undoubtedly impacted the outcome. While we won’t be able to quantify that impression until Elections Ontario posts the financial returns from campaigns and riding associations, the relatively modest fundraising results reported by our opponents in recent years strongly suggest that the majority of their funding came from transfers from their respective central parties. We, by contrast, had to fund our campaign almost entirely from the generosity of our local donors. Generous they were, but we were left at a serious disadvantage. The lesson going forward is that we need to start now to raise enough funds in each of the coming four years to take us close to the campaign spending limit in 2022, thereby ensuring that we can’t again be outspent.
The reality is that the relatively modest funds which we had accumulated over the past several years were essentially exhausted by the recent campaign. Hence, it’s critical that we get started right away.
If you are one our long-time donors who gave a lot by cheque or an online donation over the past several months, perhaps you could consider switching to more modest monthly “ABC” donations to our riding association. If you are already an ABC donor, you might consider moving to a higher monthly amount. After generous tax credits, your net annual cost will be modest and, if enough Kingston Liberals join in, that would get us where we need to be going into the next election. You can conveniently sign-up for or modify your ABC donations by clicking here.
If still have sufficient personal scope to either make a lump-sum donation (or an additional one if you’ve already contributed), then please consider doing so now. You can do so online at the Ontario Liberal Party donation page. The default recipient should be shown as Kingston and the Islands.
To donate instead by cheque, make it out to “Kingston and the Islands Provincial Liberal Association” (or “KIPLA” for short) and mail it to us at P.O. Box 20042, RPO Taylor Kidd, Kingston, ON K7P 2T6. Or, you could either leave a message at our voice mail number (613-877-1002) or email firstname.lastname@example.org to request that your cheque be picked up from you.
For more detailed information on donation limits and tax credits, you can visit our Information for Kingston and the Islands Donors page.