John Singleton, guns and mining biggest political donors

RADIO heavyweight John Singleton, a gun company and the mining union were among the biggest declared donors to individual political campaigns for the 2013 Federal election, new data reveals.

The Australian Electoral Commission on Monday released the data on political donations to individual MPs and Senate groups.

Despite candidates needing by law to declare donations and individual spending on advertising, most MPs returns to the AEC did not identify any sums.

The Electoral Act allows MPs and Senators a loophole, whereby donations below the $12,400 threshold, do not need to be publicly reported.

However, controversial Fairfax MP Clive Palmer's return said the Palmer United Party did not need to declare such donations as his party agent Peter Burke wrote it "exceeds the authority" of the act.

Donor returns filed with the AEC also reveal radio giant and racing identity John Singleton put more than $750,000 towards two candidates, including high-profile Nathan Bracken, who failed to get elected.

The donor returns also show gun company Nioa Nominee, a key Katter's Australian Party backer, put $10,000 towards musician James Blundell's campaign and a further $10,000 to failed candidate Rowell Walton.

A former chief of staff to then-Treasurer Wayne Swan, Member for Rankin Jim Chalmers also received a healthy $44,545 in two donations from the CFMEU's mining and energy division national office.


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