Category: Democracy (page 1 of 6)

It’s Personal – the ‘Palace Letters’ to Remain Hidden and So Too Will Scrutiny of Constitutional Process

BY LOU DARGAN

In Hocking v Director-General of the National Archives of Australia, a divided Full Federal Court (Allsop CJ and Robertson J, Flick J dissenting) ruled that the Palace Letters – the correspondence between Sir John Kerr and … Read the rest “It’s Personal – the ‘Palace Letters’ to Remain Hidden and So Too Will Scrutiny of Constitutional Process”

Can Standing Orders Prevent a Simple Majority of the House of Representatives From Passing a Bill Against the Government’s Wishes?

BY ANNE TWOMEY

Lacking an outright majority in the House of Representatives, the Morrison Government is facing the prospect that not only might it lose votes in the lower House, but a bill might be passed against its wishes, such … Read the rest “Can Standing Orders Prevent a Simple Majority of the House of Representatives From Passing a Bill Against the Government’s Wishes?”

Getting to ‘Yes’: Why our approach to winning referendums needs a rethink

BY PAUL KILDEA

Would a proposal to constitutionally entrench a ‘First Nations Voice’ pass if it were put to a referendum? What about attempts to amend section 44, or replace the Governor-General with an Australian head of state? For years, … Read the rest “Getting to ‘Yes’: Why our approach to winning referendums needs a rethink”

A Referendum on the First Nations Voice to Parliament is a National Priority

 BY TEELA REID

Labor has promised to uphold its commitment to enshrine a First Nations Voice to Parliament as a matter of priority. This means Bill Shorten has the opportunity to redefine a nation that so desperately needs leadership. Despite … Read the rest “A Referendum on the First Nations Voice to Parliament is a National Priority”

Another Stop on the Road to Meaningful Constitutional Recognition

BY GABRIELLE APPLEBY

Two significant developments emerged this week on the road towards meaningful constitutional recognition for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The first was an announcement on Tuesday by Opposition Leader Bill Shorten together with Labor’s three Aboriginal … Read the rest “Another Stop on the Road to Meaningful Constitutional Recognition”

Are Victoria’s Safe-Access Zones Safe from the Constitution?

BY JULIAN O’DONNELL

In August 2016, anti-abortion activist and mother of thirteen Kathleen Clubb approached a couple entering an abortion clinic in East Melbourne. She spoke to the couple and handed them a pamphlet, which they declined. A Magistrate would … Read the rest “Are Victoria’s Safe-Access Zones Safe from the Constitution?”

The Parliament, the Court of Disputed Returns, and the Solicitor-General

BY GABRIELLE APPLEBY

In those final days of August, when we watched, once again, an Australian political party overthrow the leader who led it to its last electoral victory, serious questions were raised about the eligibility of the protagonist, Mr … Read the rest “The Parliament, the Court of Disputed Returns, and the Solicitor-General”

Rotten Behaviour in the Coward’s Castle?

BY SARAH HOOK AND ELEN SEYMOUR

In Coleman v Power, Kirby J said:

One might wish for more rationality, less superficiality, diminished invective and increased logic and persuasion in political discourse. But those of that view must find another

Read the rest “Rotten Behaviour in the Coward’s Castle?”

Dressing Dutton Up as Lamb – Section 44 and the Competing Arguments for Disqualification and Exoneration of Peter Dutton

Anne Photos 003By ANNE TWOMEY

While the failure of Peter Dutton’s leadership challenge took some heat out of the question of his potential disqualification from Parliament, it left unresolved whether his seat has been vacated due to a breach of s 44 … Read the rest “Dressing Dutton Up as Lamb – Section 44 and the Competing Arguments for Disqualification and Exoneration of Peter Dutton”

The Constitutional Crisis that Keeps on Giving: Could an Invalidly Appointed Minister’s Decisions be Challenged via Judicial Review?

BY JANINA BOUGHEY

In the midst of the Liberal Party’s recent leadership turmoil, questions were raised about Peter Dutton’s eligibility to sit in Parliament. As Minister for Home Affairs (which, until the latest re-shuffle included immigration) Dutton was responsible, … Read the rest “The Constitutional Crisis that Keeps on Giving: Could an Invalidly Appointed Minister’s Decisions be Challenged via Judicial Review?”

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