Constitutional Change and Bicameralism in Australia: the Perversity of 'Reform'

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

It is desirable for a constitution, as a power-limiting device, to possess significant rigidity or, in other words. 10 be entrenched. in the Australian states, with the exception of Queensland, the upper houses of parliament have an increasingly important role to play in providing that rigidity. The democratisation of state upper houses and the adoption ofelectoral systems which ensure incongruent partisan representation between houses in Australia's bicameral parliaments mean that upper houses have the political capacity to ensure that important legislation, including proposals for constitutional change, is properly debated in parliament and, to an extent in the wider community. In this context, it seems perverse that much so called 'reform' of upper houses in Australia continues to focus on various means ofsubordinating these chambers to the will of the lower house majority. This article argues that reform should be directed at enhancing, rather than weakening, the role of Australia's unique upper houses.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)89-102
JournalAustralasian Parliamentary Review
Volume20
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2005

Fingerprint

bicameralism
parliament
rigidity
reform
chamber
democratization
constitution
legislation
community

Cite this

@article{a1ff17b1946a46958fc68035c2a2436a,
title = "Constitutional Change and Bicameralism in Australia: the Perversity of 'Reform'",
abstract = "It is desirable for a constitution, as a power-limiting device, to possess significant rigidity or, in other words. 10 be entrenched. in the Australian states, with the exception of Queensland, the upper houses of parliament have an increasingly important role to play in providing that rigidity. The democratisation of state upper houses and the adoption ofelectoral systems which ensure incongruent partisan representation between houses in Australia's bicameral parliaments mean that upper houses have the political capacity to ensure that important legislation, including proposals for constitutional change, is properly debated in parliament and, to an extent in the wider community. In this context, it seems perverse that much so called 'reform' of upper houses in Australia continues to focus on various means ofsubordinating these chambers to the will of the lower house majority. This article argues that reform should be directed at enhancing, rather than weakening, the role of Australia's unique upper houses.",
author = "Bruce Stone",
year = "2005",
language = "English",
volume = "20",
pages = "89--102",
journal = "Legislative Studies",
issn = "0816-9152",
number = "1",

}

Constitutional Change and Bicameralism in Australia: the Perversity of 'Reform'. / Stone, Bruce.

In: Australasian Parliamentary Review, Vol. 20, No. 1, 2005, p. 89-102.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Constitutional Change and Bicameralism in Australia: the Perversity of 'Reform'

AU - Stone, Bruce

PY - 2005

Y1 - 2005

N2 - It is desirable for a constitution, as a power-limiting device, to possess significant rigidity or, in other words. 10 be entrenched. in the Australian states, with the exception of Queensland, the upper houses of parliament have an increasingly important role to play in providing that rigidity. The democratisation of state upper houses and the adoption ofelectoral systems which ensure incongruent partisan representation between houses in Australia's bicameral parliaments mean that upper houses have the political capacity to ensure that important legislation, including proposals for constitutional change, is properly debated in parliament and, to an extent in the wider community. In this context, it seems perverse that much so called 'reform' of upper houses in Australia continues to focus on various means ofsubordinating these chambers to the will of the lower house majority. This article argues that reform should be directed at enhancing, rather than weakening, the role of Australia's unique upper houses.

AB - It is desirable for a constitution, as a power-limiting device, to possess significant rigidity or, in other words. 10 be entrenched. in the Australian states, with the exception of Queensland, the upper houses of parliament have an increasingly important role to play in providing that rigidity. The democratisation of state upper houses and the adoption ofelectoral systems which ensure incongruent partisan representation between houses in Australia's bicameral parliaments mean that upper houses have the political capacity to ensure that important legislation, including proposals for constitutional change, is properly debated in parliament and, to an extent in the wider community. In this context, it seems perverse that much so called 'reform' of upper houses in Australia continues to focus on various means ofsubordinating these chambers to the will of the lower house majority. This article argues that reform should be directed at enhancing, rather than weakening, the role of Australia's unique upper houses.

M3 - Article

VL - 20

SP - 89

EP - 102

JO - Legislative Studies

JF - Legislative Studies

SN - 0816-9152

IS - 1

ER -