Dismissing a Monarch|
DISMISSING A MONARCH
by Dr. Glen Sheil
In Australia the G-G is sworn in to be apolitical and act on behalf of all the people without fear or favour, without affection or ill will. He and he alone wields all the powers of our Australian Crown. Only the people can alter the Constitution. In effect this means that the G-G is the people. If a PM wants to sack a G-G, and he can only do this if the G-G goes mad or starts behaving unconstitutionally, he is really getting rid of the people.
With freedom of the press we will all know if the G-G has gone bats, and we should similarly have a fair idea if he starts behaving unconstitutionally. In any case, if the PM wants to survive a sacking of the G-G, he should make sure the people know the G-G is behaving unconstitutionally, because such an event results in an immediate general election. If the people disagree it is the PM who goes.
We have never had occasion to sack a G-G in spite of the fact that PMs tend to appoint a man who is likely to pamper their idiosyncrasies.
We will never have to sack the Monarch as she does not get an opportunity to act unconstitutionally. Her sole remaining function is the appointment and removal of our Gs-G on the advice of our democratically elected PM. This is merely our method of appointment and removal. It has nothing to do with control. If we wish the Queen to stop we only have to ask her and she will go. However most of us regard this as a congenial reminder of Australia's remarkable Constitutional development and a way of thanking Britain for the flying start we got as a nation.
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