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(AAP Image/Lukas Coch)

For bodies that depend heavily on taxpayer funding, political parties are some of the least regulated, least accountable institutions in the country -- which is exactly the way they prefer it.

After last year's federal election, federal political parties were paid $68.6 million in taxpayer funding, based on their share of votes (another $1 million went to independent candidates who achieved more than 4% of the primary vote).

That's separate from the $300 million that will be spent on staff for politicians in their electorate offices and for ministerial advisers, and $220 million spent on the remuneration and administrative expenses of MPs and senators (there's also around $34 million spent a year on services for them).