Tag Archive: Senate

Does it really matter if we call Australian politics “semi-parliamentary”?

Immediately after John Kerr had sacked the Prime Minister, Gough Whitlam returned to the Lodge, set the table and sat down to eat steaks. As they ate, he and his closest colleagues thrashed… Continue reading

The Development of Semi-Parliamentarism in Australia

One thing that struck me recently when I was re-reading Fred Daly’s memoirs From Curtin to Kerr (1977) was his view that the Senate was essentially irrelevant to day to day Australian politics. … Continue reading

Policy before party: women and political collaboration

In 2006, four women senators from different parties made history when they worked together across party lines to overturn the ministerial veto on medical abortion drug RU486. What led these women to collaborate… Continue reading

Time for debate over party regulation?

The current inquiry by the federal parliament’s Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters (JCSEM) into the conduct of the 2016 federal election should be an opportunity for real debate over party regulation.  Despite… Continue reading

Rage against the machine: time to rethink our electoral systems?

Young people are increasingly becoming disinterested and disengaged with mainstream electoral politics. While this trend cannot yet be classified as long term, it raises an interesting point of why young people are turning… Continue reading

Parliamentary divergence – the path to political dysfunction

The Senate has always constituted something of a challenge to Federal governments wanting to implement their legislative programmes.  However, that is how it should be, surely – the Senate is supposed to operate… Continue reading

Reforming in Australia: increasing the representativeness of the Australian Senate

Prior to the 2016 federal election held on 2 July, the Coalition demonstrated a rare degree of collaboration with the Greens and passed changes to reform the electoral process for the Senate. This… Continue reading