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MARCH 2014

VOL 1 ISSUE 1

GOVERNMENT SYSTEM OF AUSTRALIA
Background:
Australia is broken into 6 states and three self-governing territories each having their own constitution, parliament, government and law. Australia is a federation, a constitutional monarchy and a parliamentary democracy.

A Parliamentary Democracy:
The Parliament consists of the Queen, and two Houses- the House of Representatives and the Senate. In order for a law to be passed both of the Houses of Parliament have to agree. Parliament, along with creating laws, holds ministers and the government accountable for their actions. The two houses have equal power except for some restrictions on the Senate to directly amend specific financial legislations. Some duties Parliament also partakes in is: authorizing the government to spend public money, to provide support or a governing party to members of the

The Constitutional Monarchy:

Australia is an independent nation but shares a monarchy with the United Kingdom, there fore; the Queen resides in the United Kingdom and is represents in Australia by a Governor-General. The Governor-General of Australia was usually a British peer until 1930 when the first Australian was appointed to the office. The Queens role as Queen of Australia is separate from her role as Queen of England. The Queens only necessary function is to appoint the Governor-General and the II, position is Elizabeth current Queen of Australia began her
reign in 1952 resides in the United Kingdom where she is also Queen.

The Senate:

The Senate represents six Australian states, and two self-governing territories. All states elect twelve representatives while each territory elects two, regardless of size. The 76 total senators serve six-year terms except for the territory senators. Half-Senate elections happen every six years and a form of representation known as the singe transferable vote elects the Senate.

The Executive Council and Cabinet:
The Executive Council has the power to make government decisions and is made up of members of the federal ministry. The Cabinet consists mostly of senior ministers, the Prime Minister as head, and the most significant government decisions are made within the Cabinet

The House of Representatives:

150 single-member electorates makes up Australia, each representing 80-90 thousand voters, and a member of the House of Representatives. Each state has a given amount of representatives depending on their population. An election for House of Representatives happens every three years.