why do we need a governor general

(Alphabetical order) Fact Sheet в Governor-General [PDF 313kb, 2 pages]
Australia is a constitutional monarchy, which means that the Queen is our head of state. However, as the Queen lives in Britain, her powers are delegated to the Governor-General who lives in Australia. Together with the Senate and the House of Representatives, the Governor-General is a part of Australia's Parliament. В The Governor-General does not have the authority to make decisions on behalf of the government, but has a role in both the government and the Parliament. The Governor-General is not part of the government or the opposition and must remain neutral. Whenever the Governor-General makes a public statement, they avoid personal opinions and do not comment on political and other controversies. Section 1 of the Australian Constitution states that the Parliament вshall consist of the Queen, a Senate, and a House of Representativesв.


Section 61 of the Constitution goes on to state that вthe executive power of the Commonwealth is vested in the Queen and is exercisable by the Governor-General as the Queenвs representativeв. These provisions mean that the Governor-General is a part of the Parliament and the Executive, and carries out tasks on behalf of the Queen (See ). The Constitution sets out some specific tasks for the Governor-General, including: giving Royal Assent (approval) to a bill passed by the House of Representatives and the Senate. The Governor-General may recommend changes to a bill; however, no Governor-General has ever refused to give Royal Assent starting the process for a federal election (see convening a joint sitting of Parliament (see acting as Commander-in-Chief of the Australian Defence Force.


The Governor-General's ceremonial and constitutional roles are closely related. The Governor-General's ceremonial duties include: administering the oath of office to the Prime Minister, ministers, judges and other officials awarding special honours, in their role as the Chancellor of the Order of Australia. The Governor-General is in constant contact with the Australian people. These duties include: visiting places hit by national disaster, such as floods or fire. Australia has had 26 Governors-General. The first was the Right Honourable John Adrian Louis Hope, 7th Earl of Hopetoun, who served from 1901 to 1903. The first Australian-born Governor-General was the Right Honourable Sir Isaac Alfred Isaacs, who served from 1931 to 1936. The current Governor-General is His Excellency General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd).


Source: The, and the other agents of our in its legislature, do not have the time, the energy, or the capacity to inspire Canadians. When a visits a base for the, I would suggest that they are visited someone to whom they can all serve. With a partisan Prime Minister, however, some members are going to shun the head of government. A Prime Minister's visit isn't going to boost everyone's morale. There's no getting around that. No elected representative has the time to promote our culture or our arts so, our Governor General takes on this vital task. I would suggest that we do, in fact, need the Governor General. Yes, is represented in Canada; however, she is also a representative of the Canadian people (as she has made quite clear during the first few months of what has been, in my opinion, a smashingly successful term).


I would suggest that we need to have someone who is above partisan politics, to mediate where necessary (God forbit such a situation ever arise, however, where her reserve powers would need to be exercised to save our democracy). Of course the Governor General has this right; however, I would urge you to look to our friend, the, was unable to pass a budget through both Houses however, the, at the time, refused to resign, or to take any substantive action to meet the financial obligations of the Government. The had no choice but to dismiss the Prime Minister outright to remedy the very serious situation that had developed. It should be noted that when the Governor General consulted the Queen, she refused to advise him, on the basis that she should not interfere in Australian affairs.


Only once has a Governor General in our history ever had to use his or her reserve powers. In 1925, the late faced a vote of non-confidence from the opposition (he had a minority government); however, instead of permitting the House to vote on the motion, he attempted to ask the Governor General to dissolve the immediately, so as to prevent the defeat of his government. The Governor General, thinking that a Government should not be permitted to run from a want of confidence, refused Mackenzie's request and in doing so, forced the Prime Minister to resign. The Governor General, the late, appointed the to govern temporarily. This was an entirely appropriate use of reserved powers, and had nothing to do with. We have grown up, and we've done so alongside the Queen of Canada. Revision : (1) Corrected a formatting error.