There are many considerations:
WHEN DOES AUSTRALIA BECOME A REPUBLIC?
A difficult question with a simple answer.
Many have sworn allegiance to the Crown at some points in their life, such as the Scouts and the Military and many people would wish to honour that.
Besides the Queen is a credit to the Monarchy.
However Prince Charles is another matter – he is not his mother. He has even admitted he would prefer not to be King.
A thought to ponder… Would you actually vote for Prince Charles?
Australia should remain with its current system until Queen Elizabeth II either retires or dies.
At that point the Prime Minister calls an election as outlined for the Australian HOS.
“The Queen is Dead. Long Live the Republic of Australia!”
TERM OF OFFICE
The term would run concurrent with the Federal Government, that is, three years until a new HOS has been decided. When an election is called, the HOS stays in place until the next HOS is elected.
NUMBER OF TERMS
The Head of State will face the people and can remain as Head of State as long as their home State continues to elect them and the combined Members continue to elect them.
If the G-G remains as the Primary Candidate the HOS will receive Top Position above and below the line. Regardless of the states government decision, should the HOS seek re-election, the HOS receives automatic placement below the line on their State ballot paper in keeping with the AEC method of selection.
However, their is no obligation on the State to appoint the HOS as the preferred Primary Candidate for their State or Territory.
The candidates for the states’ and territories representative would be elected on the day of the federal election. In other words, there would be three ballot papers:
- House of Representatives
- Head of State
And possibly a 4th for a bye election in a State or Territory seat, if a sitting member resign to seek election for the HOS.
If there are State Laws that determine a bye election they should be applied. Otherwise, if this should occur within 3 months of a State Election being called, the State Governor will appoint a a temporary member from the same party on the recommendation of the Party Leader.
After the Election and once all candidates are finalised, the first role of the Prime Minister of the new Federal Parliament will be to invite the elected HOS State and Territory Representatives to the House of Representatives where the vote for the Head of State will take place.
TRANSFER OF POWER
The new Federal Government will be sworn in by the incumbent Head of State on the day of the Head of State election.
The first role of the new elected Government will then be to elect the Head of State.
Should the incumbent HOS be returned to office by the members of the various houses, the Speaker then asks the HOS if they wish to continue as HOS, The HOS will formally reply, “I do.” and the HOS will be re-sworn in.
Should the incumbent NOT be returned to Office, at the announcement of the new HOS by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the incumbent HOS will immediately resign to the Prime Minister to stand aside for the HOS Election.
Upon receiving the Resignation of the HOS, the PM advises the Speaker of the House of Representatives that the HOS has resigned. Should the HOS choose not to resign the PM must dismiss the HOS immediately.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives immediately asks the HOS ‘Elect’ to confirm they wish to continue to be the HOS and HOS will formally reply before the House of Representative, “I do.” The Head of State Elect is immediately sworn in by the Speaker and the swearing in witnessed by the members of the Lower House.
Should the Incumbent HOS or HOS Elect reply that they do not wish to continue, then the HOS automatically falls to the second in line with third candidate becoming the deputy and the process continues.
In all these proceedings the National Broadcasters ABC and SBS will cover the entire proceedings uncut and without ad breaks, so that the people of Australia may also witness the proceedings.
DISMISSAL OF THE HEAD OF STATE
Currently the Prime Minister can dismiss the Governor-General without warning.
Should it become necessary, it is suggested that removal of the Head of State can occur after the following protocol is followed:
- The Prime Minister request the HOS resign. If the HOS refuses:
- The Prime Minister may call a vote of No Confidence, requiring a two third (66.7%) majority of the House of Representatives to be successful. If the two third vote is successful,
- The PM once more will request the resignation of the HOS. Should that not be forthcoming within 48 hours, the PM then has the right to dismiss the HOS but must act within an additional 48 hours. After 96 hours the vote of no confidence lapses.
- Should the first vote of no confidence fail, the PM may request a second vote within 48 Hours, this time by a Joint sitting of both houses of the Federal parliament. However, this is the final time the PM can seek a vote of no confidence with that term of office.
Should this second vote fail the PM has a two options:
- Call a half senate election
- Ask the Head of State to dissolve both Houses and go to the polls. The Head of State remains as HOS while the Parliament is in “caretaker mode.”
DISMISSAL OF THE GOVERNMENT
Quite possibly the most contentious issue….
Firstly, the HOS has no right to dismiss an elected Government.
That is the people’s role at the ballot box, however, there is one circumstance where the nation could become paralysed. Should this occur, the HOS has the final option to dissolve the Parliament and go to the polls
The House of Representatives, the Senate and the Head of State will all face the polls.
Based on precedent, the only reason, so far, that a HOS has dismissed a government was the 1975 Constitutional Crisis when the Senate blocked supply. Based on the events of those days, this procedure brings in a transparent mechanism to break the deadlock that could paralyse the nation. Note: Since the event of 1975 supply has not been blocked and the other parties such as Democrats and Greens have voted to ensure the Supply Bill has been passed.
The action described below allows the HOS to break a deadlock, but only when the Senate is “Blocking of Supply.”
For all other Bills that are refused or blocked by the Senate, only the PM has the right to dissolve the Government and go to the polls
When a government has submitted a bill that results in the blocking of supply and has been rejected twice, the ‘double dissolution trigger” has come into play. That is the PM can request the Head of State dissolve both Houses and go to the polls to elect the House of Representatives, the Senate, as well as the Head of State.
Should the PM refuse to action the trigger, the HOS must attempt to find a way to get the Government and Opposition, House of Representatives and Senate to find a workable solution. At this point the PM can call a half senate election.
Should the Government and Opposition and the House of Representatives and Senate still be at an impasse and to all intent and purpose, in the mind of the Head of State reached a complete deadlock, the PM not having called a half senate election or a a double dissolution, the HOS must ask both PM and the leader of the Opposition if they believe a solution is possible.
If the reply by both parties is “No,” the HOS asks the PM if the PM would like to call a half senate election.
If the PM replies “No,” The HOS may then formally advise both PM and Leader of the Opposition of the Intention to dissolve both houses within 48 hours.
From being told of the Intention to call a double dissolution, the Government and Opposition, the House of Representatives and Senate have 48 hours to come to a solution and pass the bills that brought the Double Dissolution trigger into play.
However, once the PM has been formerly advised by the Head of State of the intention to call a Double Dissolution, the PM can still action the Double Dissolution trigger, but now may no longer call a half senate election.
After 48 hours the HOS must formerly meet together with and ask both PM and Opposition Leader if they can come to agreement. At this point, if both PM and OL agree that a solution is close at hand or the HOS can broker a solution then that are allowed an additional time of no longer than 24 hours.
However, should at anytime, either the PM or OL advise that negotiations have failed, the HOS is obliged to dissolve both houses and call an election.
But before doing this, the HOS must remind/advise both parties that a double dissolution and election is about to be called, still giving the PM the right to call an election and nominate the Governments preferred date to hold the election.
Should the PM decline to request to call an election within the final 24 hour time frame, the HOS must dissolve both houses, and instead, the HOS call an election, the election date will be nominated by the HOS.
Thank you for taking the time to read this and in making it this far.If you agree that this is the preferable model, for Australia adopt to become an Australian republic, then please sign the petition.
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