Accountability Is Under Threat Urgently Reset The Balance

Accountability Is Under Threat Urgently Reset The Balance

All Australians have a stake on our nation’s governance Threat. There are many reasons to be concerned that the Morrison government is disregarding core principles of Australian democracy in its pursuit of electoral advantage.

Scott Morrison’s Australian government is the most blatant example of a disdainful attitude to accountability. There has never been a government that has fostered the culture of secrecy as much as the Prime Minister’s Office.

Journalists, experts, and practitioners are all familiar with the government’s disregard for checks and balances, resentment at scrutiny, and willingness to throw out long-standing conventions. This is also a common observation among former Coalition members. Malcolm Turnbull, former prime minister, describes a culture of entitlement and a culture that doesn’t hold government accountable in the government he claims he is deeply trouble.

Government Defied The Speaker Threat

This same culture was again display in parliament last week when the government define the Speaker and exclude the votes of independent crossbenchers in order to defeat a procedural motion to refer Christian Porter’s blind trust matter to the House of Representatives Privileges Committee.

Tony Smith had declared that there was a prima facie cause for the Committee’s investigation. But Labor claimed that Peter Dutton, Leader of Government in the House, opposed the Speaker’s ruling. This led to Coalition MPs mobilizing to vote.

Helen Haines, Member for Indi, stated that Dutton told her it would not be practical to count votes from independent crossbench members remotely. This is despite the fact that this has been a routine procedure in the Senate since September 2020.

Many documents have written about the Morrison government’s poor record in integrity matters. It has been accuse of rorting and misusing public funds through discretionary grant programs. It also refuses to answer questions from the media or meet reasonable expectations of accountability to parliament.

The parliament is, like the national Cabinet, a new venue to show Morrison’s courage, given his small majority and deep cracks in his government.

The Whatever It Takes Approach Gains Momentum

James Walter, a political scientist, argues that Morrison is a symbol threat of decades-long efforts to centralize and rule Australian politics. Morrison has strengthened and leveraged the institutional and personal power that the prime ministership holds, which includes a court of trusted loyalists as well as a large and influential PMO. It enforces discipline and controls the government, including the public sector.

Morrison’s PMO is known for backing rivals and punishing opponents. Former chief of staff Phil Gaetjens is accused of leading his department. That allowed the prime minister to avoid accountability and scrutiny.

Australia is not the only system of Westminster that is struggling with the growing power of its political executive. Similar concerns were raised in the United Kingdom about how unwritten conventions that are intended to guide political practice. Based on those who hold power exercising self-restraint and the long-term interest public, are sufficient to ensure proper standards of conduct and respect for constitutional norms.

A series of constitutional violations have occurred in the UK since the 2016 Brexit referendum. Andrew Blick and Peter Hennessy comment. The abuses have affected many of the major government organs, including the Cabinet, Civil Service, Parliament and the judiciary.

These revelations have raised questions about whether the good chap theory. That underpins British political tradition (and also informs Australia’s) is still a strong bulwark against an excessive executive

Britain and other systems of Westminster-style have been well serve by. The flexibility of an unwritten constitution that is based on restraint, mutual respect, and governing norms. Blick and Hennessy disagree.