Disclosure regulations should strike a balance between transparency and privacy.
- Items identified by reporting rules should strike an adequate balance between the party's right to privacy as a voluntary association and the public's right to know the important financial details of the struggle for power. The disclosure provisions' details on the sources and amounts of large donations must take into account the potential to identify interested money and the desirability of confidentiality in grass-roots support to parties and candidates.
- Carried to an extreme, the voting public's right to know who supports candidates and parties would mean that even the smallest amount would have to be disclosed, giving the name, address and occupation of the donor. There are, however, expenses involved in providing transparency: first, administrative expenses, connected with professional bookkeeping at all levels of political activity; and second, the expenses of political actors and public agencies in preparing and processing unnecessarily detailed information. Thus a realistic concept of transparency has to be a search for the optimum balance.
- In reporting and disclosure regulations, there is a need to strike a balance between the wish by outsiders to know (transparency) and the wish by donors and recipients to maintain their private sphere (privacy).