Questions tagged [australia]

For questions relating to the government and politics of Australia.

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47
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6answers
6k views

Why should public servants be apolitical?

The High Court of Australia has recently ruled in Comcare v. Banerji which was a test case that revealed the limits of the implied freedom of speech in Australia. A public servant, Michaela Banerji, ...
30
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6answers
9k views

Why do Australians want to remain under British monarchy?

If I am not wrong they once voted against being a republic country some years ago. I understand Australians and feel sympathy for them about that they are different from some other countries which ...
22
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2answers
1k views

Equivalent to government shutdown in parliamentary systems

Given the recent government shutdown in the US, there have been a lot of related questions here wondering about the possibility of it happening in the UK, Australia, and so on. In general, the ...
16
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2answers
3k views

Is retrospective legislation legal in Australia?

In 2011, the Commonwealth passed legislation making it a crime for recipients of social security to fail to report changes to their financial circumstances to Centrelink (our social security agency) ...
15
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1answer
465 views

Has there ever been a situation in a modern Westminster parliament where there have been more independents than members of the second largest party?

Has there ever been a situation where a modern Westminster parliament (national/federal/state/provincial) has ended up with more independent lower house MPs than MPs belonging to the second-largest ...
12
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1answer
786 views

Why is the speaker of the House of Representatives an MP?

The Speaker of the House of Representatives (Australia) is currently Bronwyn Bishop and there was, the other day, some issues raised over her bias. This led me to pose the question - why is the ...
12
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1answer
203 views

How much have carbon-based industries invested in anti-climate-change lobbying in Australia?

There are reports that oil, coal and gas industries in America have invested more than half a billion dollars on lobbying against acting on climate change. In Australia there are more than 540 '...
10
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2answers
169 views

Australian Head of State

Under the Australian Constitution, who will become Australia's Head of State if the British monarchy is suddenly dissolved or overthrown and Britain becomes a republic?
10
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1answer
319 views

How does the Australian Electoral Commission avoid partisan bias?

I was watching a Vox video on gerrymandering in Pennsylvania, and thought how lucky I am that gerrymandering is not generally considered to be much of a problem here in Australia. Some states had ...
9
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2answers
400 views

Can foreign countries disqualify Australian candidates at will?

Could a country get their preferred candidates to win an Australian election by declaring all other candidates for that office citizens of that country, thereby making all those other candidates ...
9
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1answer
199 views

Could the Australian Government be denied funding in the same way that happened in the USA?

Recently there has been a lot of news about the US Debt Crisis. Could something similar happen in Australia, for example if the senate refused to pass legislation allowing the government to spend ...
9
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1answer
1k views

How did Australia wind up with a two-party system?

Currently in Australia, there are two major parties: The Australian Labor Party and the Australian Liberal Party (which ironically is a conservative party. Currently in Australia it is simply not ...
9
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2answers
352 views

How can an Australian Senator be removed from office?

There's currently a change.org petition calling for the removal of Fraser Anning from the Australian Senate. Accepting that a change.org petition is merely indicative, and ignoring the specific ...
9
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1answer
289 views

Why does the Australian Labor Party spell use the American spelling instead of the Australian spelling?

Australia uses British English for their spelling, which spells labour as in physical work, with a "u", where the Australian Labor Party spells it without a "u".This is in contrast to the British ...
9
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1answer
115 views

What measures exist to impose budget-like changes without passing through the Australian senate?

In this article is says: Treasurer Joe Hockey has warned the Labor Party and the Greens to pass tough budget measures through the Senate or the government will find other ways to push through ...
8
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1answer
176 views

Nuclear energy in Australia

Why is Australia not considering nuclear energy? Is the coal industry a key factor to nuclear energy not being considered?
8
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1answer
504 views

How is constitutional monarchy perceived in Commonwealth realms other than United Kingdom?

Especially in countries with huge population and economy like Canada and Australia, what's the opinion of people about constitutional monarchy? Are there any well known groups or indivuals who opposes ...
8
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0answers
135 views

What have been the largest hostile cross-benches in Australian senate / house of review history?

The Australian federal Senate is a house of review, elected from multiple member state electorates. It is usually comprised of a Government (often in minority), an Opposition (in lesser minority), ...
7
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1answer
4k views

What international relations is Australia missing out on by being a constitutional monarchy?

For my debate, I have to argue in favour of Australia being a republic. I'm planning on one of my points being that by still being a monarchy, Australia is missing out on multiple international ...
7
votes
3answers
350 views

How did so many Australian politicans recently win Parliamentary seats while unaware of or denying their second nationality?

Half a dozen Australian members of Parliament have resigned or are threatened with the need to do so after "discovering" that they are dual citizens, forbidden from serving (how surprising this truly ...
7
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1answer
158 views

How is Australia being represented at the G20 summit?

Since Australia has an election tomorrow, we've sent our foreign minister to represent us instead of the prime minister. However, I think the election occurs in the middle of the second day of the ...
7
votes
2answers
181 views

What caused the gap between the opinion polls and the election result in the Australian Federal 2019 election?

Leading up to the 2019 election, the polls suggested a Labor win, but they lost. What was the cause of the difference? I realize it may take some time before a good answer is available.
7
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1answer
169 views

Do aboriginal Australians value the acknowledgement of country speeches

Before many formal presentations often that have some connection with the government there is a formal acknowledgement of the traditional owners of the area and the tribe. This is usually in the ...
7
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1answer
132 views

If no one can form government, which seats are voted on?

In Australia, if after an election no party can form a government, either by themselves or by coalition, another vote must be called. I understand that all the lower house seats are up for grabs, but ...
7
votes
1answer
293 views

Why did Australian Labor MP Khalil Eideh get denied entry to the USA?

Khalil Eideh is an Australian State (Victoria) Member of Parliament who was on an official trip studying drug policy and injecting rooms. When the group was to travel from Canada to the USA he was ...
7
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1answer
162 views

How is the US-China trade war viewed in Australia?

A pretty good question on econ.SE has highlighted the close relationship between the Australian and Chinese economies. So, I wonder, how is the US-China trade war viewed in Australia, at a political ...
7
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0answers
139 views

Would Australia leaving ANZUS affect its Five Eyes benefits?

I'm preparing an oral presentation on whether or not Australia should leave ANZUS, but can't find much information regarding the effect the separation would have on the Five Eyes agreement. On the ...
6
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1answer
466 views

What does 'robust political insult' mean?

Source: p 5. Rhetoric: A Very Short Introduction (1 ed, 2013) by Richard Toye. In particular, it is important to be sensitive to differences in political systems—giving a speech in the British ...
6
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1answer
333 views

Why is there a gun amnesty in Australia? (2017)

There is currently a gun amnesty run by the federal government. What motivated the gun amnesty? Who motivated it? What is the objective? Is it likely to achieve the objective? How much is it likely ...
6
votes
1answer
144 views

What caused the sarcastically used title “Minister for Women” to be used against Abbott?

I hear the phrase "Minister for Women" being used sarcastically about Abbott. What caused this title to be used for him? The wikipedia article Minister for Women (Australia) mentions that the title ...
6
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1answer
143 views

How much of an influence did Port Arthur have on New Zealand?

New Zealand has announced it will change its gun laws in the wake of the massacre against attendees of two mosques. As an Australian, I’m surprised that New Zealand didn’t change its laws after the ...
6
votes
1answer
66 views

How do Australian Upper House / Senate elections work?

The upper house sheet has a lot more candidates than the lower house and they tend to have more variety in terms of which parties get elected. Also of the many people on the ballot paper how many of ...
6
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1answer
98 views

Is Tasmanian Style, and Optional Preferential Voting the same thing?

I was recently at a NFP's AGM (Not For Profit's Annual General Meeting). An election for 3 members of the board was carried out. (Board of 9, each with 3 year term, staggered such that 3 come up for ...
6
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1answer
226 views

Are Australian Federal Senators Bob Carr and Kim Carr related, or do they just have the same surname by coincidence?

I've tried to Google this question, but I haven't been able to find anything relevant, which suggests that it is just a coincidence, but I would have thought that surely someone else would be curious ...
6
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0answers
279 views

In Australia, do Rupert Murdoch's publications deny anthropogenic climate change?

In Australia, do networks and publications owned by Rupert Murdoch, generally deny or down play the impacts of human actions on climate change? If so, what are some major cases where they advocated ...
6
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3answers
414 views

Is anti-Islam sentiment predominantly associated with more traditional nationalities in Australia?

In Australia, is anti-Islam sentiment predominantly associated with people who have, or are descended from, nationalities more traditionally associated with Australia, such as the UK, Ireland, and ...
5
votes
1answer
231 views

Statistics on Australian non-voters who are actually sanctioned (fined or otherwise punished)

Voting is compulsory in Australia (source). Non-voters receive a letter, asking that they provide a valid and sufficient reason, or pay a A$20 penalty (source). Voter turnout in Australia is high, ...
5
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1answer
88 views

What does the Australian constitution specify about the mechanism of voting

As far as I know most voting systems in Australia are based on a seat based preferential system. Also that there is variation in exactly how this works between states. What part of the voting system ...
5
votes
1answer
6k views

What does it mean when a party has a mandate?

In the media I hear politicians say things such as "we have a mandate" and "the opposition has a mandate". What exactly does it mean when a particular party of government has a mandate?
5
votes
1answer
390 views

Can Australia join the Council of Europe?

In order to compete in the Eurovision Song Contest, a country has to be a member of the European Broadcasting Union, which requires being within the European Broadcasting Area, or being a member of ...
5
votes
0answers
498 views

Why UK, Canada, Australia and NZ would not want to build a free movement union like EU? [closed]

In modern world large economies have advantages (bargaining power, unified standards, and many more) and this is one of the main reasons why EU has been created. Now when Britain is leaving the EU ...
4
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1answer
1k views

How did health care work before Australia had medicare?

Medicare is the Australian public healthcare system, what did Australia have before it existed.
4
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1answer
196 views

Why did John Bercow nominate an Australian senate official to be the Clerk of the House?

In 2014 why did John Bercow, Speaker of the House of Commons, nominate an Australian senate official to be the Clerk of the House? The Clerk of the House of Commons is a constitutional advisor, it ...
4
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1answer
200 views

What do the US and Australian governments gain from a marine presence in Darwin?

The US has decided to establish a permanent marine presence in Darwin. What do benefits do both governments gain from this?
4
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3answers
271 views

Was Australian Labor loss due to internal party conflict?

One of commentors on a Slashdot article (somewhat tangentially to the question's topic, discussing a Liberal Democratic party Senate win) noted that the main reason Labor lost the nation-wide election[...
4
votes
2answers
244 views

Websites for understanding preference flows in the Australian senate

In Australia, candidates from some very minor parties look like they'll winning some seats. For example, a candidate from the Australian Sports Party looks set ABC link to win a seat in Western ...
4
votes
2answers
342 views

Term for the trend where a political party does worse in State elections when holding power Federally

In Australia it's well-known (see, for example, here) that a party that holds power at Federal level will - all other things being equal - tend to hold a disadvantage in State elections. Similarly, ...
4
votes
2answers
127 views

Why has Malcolm Turnbull called a double dissolution election (May 2016)?

Malcolm Turnbull (Australian PM) has just called a double dissolution election. I understand why he can, but I don't understand why he would want to. If the polls showed the Liberals well ahead I can ...
4
votes
1answer
101 views

What is the historical composition by party of Australian parliament (HOR & Senate)?

I know from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australian_Senate#Historical what the composition the senate has been, but I would also like to know how many seats were for each member of the Coalition, and ...
4
votes
1answer
117 views

How does one get pre selected to be a member of the Australian Senate

What is the process that a person has to go through to be on the Australian senate ballot sheet? Is it any more difficult to do so independently?