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|Queen of Australia|
| Elizabeth II |
since 6 February 1952
|Heir apparent||Charles, Prince of Wales|
|This article is part of a series on the|
politics and government of
The monarchy of Australia concerns the form of government in which a hereditary king or queen serves as the nation's sovereign and head of state. Australia is governed under a form of constitutional monarchy, largely modelled on the Westminster system of parliamentary government, while incorporating features unique to the Constitution of Australia. The present monarch is Elizabeth II, styled Queen of Australia,who has reigned since 6 February 1952. She is represented in Australia as a whole by the Governor-General, in accordance with the Australian Constitution and letters patent from the Queen, and in each of the Australian states, according to the state constitutions, by a governor, assisted by a lieutenant-governor. The monarch appoints the Governor-General and the governors, on the advice respectively of the Commonwealth government and each state government. These are now almost the only constitutional functions of the monarch with regard to Australia.
Hereditary monarchy is a form of government and succession of power in which the throne passes from one member of a royal family to another member of the same family. It represents an institutionalised form of nepotism.
Sovereignty is the full right and power of a governing body over itself, without any interference from outside sources or bodies. In political theory, sovereignty is a substantive term designating supreme authority over some polity.
A head of state is the public persona who officially represents the national unity and legitimacy of a sovereign state. Depending on the country's form of government and separation of powers, the head of state may be a ceremonial figurehead or concurrently the head of government. In a parliamentary system the head of state is the de jure leader of the nation, and there is a separate de facto leader, often with the title of prime minister. In contrast, a semi-presidential system has both heads of state and government as the leaders de facto of the nation.
Australian constitutional law provides that the monarch of the United Kingdom is also the monarch in Australia.This is understood today to constitute a separate Australian monarchy, the monarch acting with regard to Australian affairs exclusively upon the advice of Australian ministers. Australia is thus one of the Commonwealth realms, sixteen independent countries that share the same person as monarch and head of state. The role and future of the monarchy has been a recurring topic of public discussion.
The United Kingdom, officially the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland but more commonly known as the UK or Britain, is a sovereign country lying off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state—the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea lies between Great Britain and Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi), the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world. It is also the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.
A Commonwealth realm is a sovereign state in which Queen Elizabeth II is the reigning constitutional monarch and head of state. Each realm is independent from the other realms. As of 2019, there are 16 Commonwealth realms: Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Canada, Grenada, Jamaica, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu, and the United Kingdom. All 16 Commonwealth realms are members of the Commonwealth of Nations, an intergovernmental organisation of 53 member states. Elizabeth II is Head of the Commonwealth.
Key features of Australia's system of government include its basis on a combination of "written" and "unwritten rules", and its retention of colonial-monarchical heads of state, comprising the British monarch and what had been the monarch's colonial representatives, the State Governors, together with the Governor-General. [ citation needed ] On all matters of the Australian Commonwealth, the monarch is advised by Australian federal Ministers of the Crown, and, effective with the Australia Act 1986, no British government can advise the monarch on any matters pertinent to Australia. Likewise, on all matters relating to any Australian state, the monarch is advised by the Ministers of the Crown of that state. In 1999 the High Court of Australia held in Sue v Hill that, at least since the Australia Act 1986, Britain has been a foreign power in regard to Australia's domestic and foreign affairs; it followed that a British citizen was a citizen of a foreign power and incapable of being a member of the Australian Parliament, pursuant to Section 44(i) of the Australian Constitution. In 2001 the High Court held that, until the United Kingdom became a foreign power, all British subjects were subjects of the Queen in right of the United Kingdom and thus could not be classified as aliens within the meaning of Section 51(xix) of the constitution.The monarch of Australia is the same person as the monarch of the 15 other Commonwealth realms within the 53-member Commonwealth of Nations; however, each country is sovereign and independent of the others.
The Commonwealth of Nations, normally known as the Commonwealth, is a sui generis political association of 53 member states, nearly all of them former territories of the British Empire. The chief institutions of the organisation are the Commonwealth Secretariat, which focuses on intergovernmental aspects, and the Commonwealth Foundation, which focuses on non-governmental relations between member states.
Minister of the Crown is a formal constitutional term used in Commonwealth realms to describe a minister to the reigning sovereign or their viceroy. The term indicates that the minister serves at His/Her Majesty's pleasure, and advises the sovereign or viceroy on how to exercise the Crown prerogatives relative to the minister's department or ministry.
The sovereign's Australian title is currently Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God Queen of Australia and Her other Realms and Territories, Head of the Commonwealth .
Divine grace is a theological term present in many religions. It has been defined as the divine influence which operates in humans to regenerate and sanctify, to inspire virtuous impulses, and to impart strength to endure trial and resist temptation; and as an individual virtue or excellence of divine origin.
The Head of the Commonwealth is the "symbol of the free association of independent member nations" of the Commonwealth of Nations, an intergovernmental organisation that currently comprises fifty-three sovereign states. There is no set term of office or term limit and the role itself involves no part in the day-to-day governance of any of the member states within the Commonwealth.
Prior to 1953, the title had simply been the same as that in the United Kingdom. A change in the title resulted from occasional discussion and an eventual meeting of Commonwealth representatives in London in December 1952, at which Canada's preferred format for the monarch's title was Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, Queen of [Realm] and of Her other realms and territories, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith .Australia, however, wished to have the United Kingdom mentioned as well. Thus, the resolution was a title that included the United Kingdom but, for the first time, also separately mentioned Australia and the other Commonwealth realms. The passage of a new Royal Style and Titles Act by the Parliament of Australia put these recommendations into law.
The precise style of British sovereigns has varied over the years. The present style is officially proclaimed in two languages:
In the Commonwealth realms, a Royal Style and Titles Act or a Royal Titles Act is an Act of Parliament passed in the relevant jurisdiction which defines the sovereign's formal title in that jurisdiction. The most significant of these acts is the Royal and Parliamentary Titles Act 1927 of the United Kingdom, which recognised the creation of the Irish Free State, a development that necessitated a change in King George V's title.
The Parliament of Australia is the legislative branch of the government of Australia. It consists of three elements: the Crown, the Senate and the House of Representatives. The combination of two elected chambers, in which the members of the Senate represent the states and territories while the members of the House represent electoral divisions according to population, is modelled on the United States Congress. Through both chambers, however, there is a fused executive, drawn from the Westminster System.
It was proposed by the Cabinet headed by Gough Whitlam that the title be amended to "denote the precedence of Australia, the equality of the United Kingdom and each other sovereign nation under the Crown, and the separation of Church and State." A new Royal Titles and Styles Bill that removed specific reference to the monarch's role as Queen of the United Kingdom was passed by the federal parliament, but the Governor-General, Sir Paul Hasluck, reserved Royal Assent "for Her Majesty's pleasure" (similarly to Governor-General Sir William McKell's actions with the 1953 Royal Titles and Styles Bill). Queen Elizabeth II signed her assent at Government House, Canberra, on 19 October 1973.
Edward Gough Whitlam was the 21st Prime Minister of Australia, serving from 1972 to 1975. The Leader of the Labor Party from 1967 to 1977, Whitlam led his party to power for the first time in 23 years at the 1972 election. He won the 1974 election before being controversially dismissed by the Governor-General of Australia, Sir John Kerr, at the climax of the 1975 Australian constitutional crisis. Whitlam remains the only Australian prime minister to have his commission terminated in that manner.
Sir Paul Meernaa Caedwalla Hasluck, was an Australian statesman who served as the 17th Governor-General of Australia, in office from 1969 to 1974. Prior to that, he was a Liberal Party politician, holding ministerial office continuously from 1951 to 1969.
Sir William John McKell, often known as Bill McKell, was an Australian politician who served as the 12th Governor-General of Australia, in office from 1947 to 1953. He had previously been Premier of New South Wales from 1941 to 1947, as leader of the Labor Party.
In 2018 a trip by the Prince of Wales to the Commonwealth country of Vanuatu, escorted by Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop in between a tour of Queensland and the Northern Territory, was paid for by Australian taxpayers.
In Oct 2011, the cost of a 10-day royal visit to Australia was put at $5.85 million.
Usually, the Queen's Australian governments pay only for the costs associated with the Governor-General and state governors in their exercising of the powers of the Crown on behalf of the Queen, including travel, security, residences, offices and ceremonial occasions.
The monarch is also the locus of oaths of allegiance; many employees of the Crown are required by law to recite this oath before taking their posts, such as all members of the Commonwealth parliament, all members of the state and territorial parliaments, as well as all magistrates, judges, police officers and justices of the peace. This is in reciprocation to the sovereign's Coronation Oath, wherein he or she promises "to govern the Peoples of... Australia... according to their respective laws and customs".New appointees to the Federal Cabinet currently also swear an oath that includes allegiance to the monarch before taking their post. However, as this oath is not written in law, it has not always been observed and depends on the form chosen by the prime minister of the time, suggested to the Governor-General. In December 2007, Kevin Rudd did not swear allegiance to the sovereign when sworn in by the Governor-General, making him the first prime minister not to do so; however, he (like all other members of parliament) did swear allegiance to the Queen, as required by law, when sworn in by the Governor-General as newly elected parliamentarians. Similarly, the Oath of Citizenship contained a statement of allegiance to the reigning monarch until 1994, when a pledge of allegiance to "Australia" and its values was introduced. The High Court found, in 2002, though, that allegiance to the Queen of Australia was the "fundamental criterion of membership" in the Australian body politic, from a constitutional, rather than statutory, point of view.
Key features of Australia's system of government include its basis on a combination of "written" and "unwritten rules", and its retention of colonial-monarchical heads of state, comprising the British monarch and what had been the monarch's colonial representatives, the State Governors, together with the Governor-General.The constitution does not directly mention the term "head of state". The Constitution defines the Governor-General as the monarch's representative. According to the Australian Parliamentary Library, Australia's head of state is the monarch, and its head of government is the prime minister, with powers limited by both law and convention for government to be carried on democratically. The federal constitution provides that the monarch is part of the Parliament and is empowered to appoint the Governor-General as the monarch's representative, while the executive power of the Commonwealth which is vested in the monarch is exercisable by the Governor-General as the monarch's representative. The few functions which the monarch does perform (such as appointing the Governor-General) are done on advice from the prime minister.
A review of the political situation in Australia from the 1970s to the present shows that, while the position of the monarch as head of state has not been altered, some Australians have argued in favour of changing the constitution into a form of republican government that would, they propose, be better suited to the Commonwealth of Australia than the current monarchy.While current official sources use the description "head of state" for the monarch, in the lead up to the republic referendum in 1999, Sir David Smith proposed an alternative explanation, that Australia already has a head of state in the person of the Governor-General, who since 1965 has invariably been an Australian citizen. This view has some support within the group Australians for Constitutional Monarchy. It is designed to counter the objections by republicans, such as the Australian Republic Movement, that no Australian can become, or can be involved in choosing, the Australian head of state. The leading textbook on Australian constitutional law formulates the position thus: "The Queen, as represented in Australia by the Governor-General, is Australia's head of state."
|“||We have a very good system now in terms of political stability... one of the reasons why we have had this wonderful stability is because of the constitutional linkages from Crown to Governor-General to Prime Minister at the Federal level, and Crown to Governor to Premiers at the State level. There are checks and balances in the system, and that is why we never had civil wars, that is why we never had huge political upheavals except in '32 and '75. So the system as it is has worked very well.||”|
|— Governor-General Michael Jeffery, 2003|
The royal prerogative also extends to foreign affairs: the Governor-General-in-Council negotiates and ratifies treaties, alliances, and international agreements.As with other uses of the royal prerogative, no parliamentary approval is required;
The sovereign, along with the Senate and the House of Representatives, being one of the three components of parliament, is called the Queen-in-Parliament . The authority of the Crown therein is embodied in the mace (House of Representatives) and Black Rod (Senate), which both bear a crown at their apex. The monarch and viceroy do not, however, participate in the legislative process save for the granting of Royal Assent by the Governor-General. Further, the constitution outlines that the Governor-General alone is responsible for summoning, proroguing, and dissolving parliament,after which the writs for a general election are usually dropped by the Prime Minister at Government House. The new parliamentary session is marked by the State Opening of Parliament, during which either the monarch or the Governor-General reads the Speech from the Throne. As the monarch and viceroy, by convention, cannot enter the House of Representatives, this, as well as the bestowing of Royal Assent, takes place in the Senate chamber; Members of Parliament are summoned to these ceremonies from the House of Representatives by the Crown's messenger, the Usher of the Black Rod, after he knocks on the doors of the lower house that have been slammed closed on him to symbolise the barring of the monarch from the House of Representatives.
All laws in Australia, except in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) Legislative Assembly, are enacted only with the granting of Royal Assent, done by the Governor-General, relevant state governor, or Administrator in the case of the Northern Territory (NT), with the Great Seal of Australia or the appropriate state or territory seal. Laws passed by the ACT and NT legislatures, unlike their state counterparts, are subject to the oversight of the government of Australia and can be disallowed by the Australian Parliament. The Governor-General may reserve a bill "for the Queen's pleasure"; that is withhold his consent to the bill and present it to the sovereign for her personal decision. Under the constitution, the sovereign also has the power to disallow a bill within one year of the Governor-General having granted Royal Assent.This power, however, has never been used.
In the United Kingdom, the sovereign is deemed the fount of justice.However, he or she does not personally rule in judicial cases, meaning that judicial functions are normally performed only in the monarch's name. Criminal offences are legally deemed to be offences against the sovereign and proceedings for indictable offences are brought in the sovereign's name in the form of The Queen [or King] against [Name] (sometimes also referred to as the Crown against [Name]). Hence, the common law holds that the sovereign "can do no wrong"; the monarch cannot be prosecuted in his or her own courts for criminal offences. Civil lawsuits against the Crown in its public capacity (that is, lawsuits against the government) are permitted; however, lawsuits against the monarch personally are not cognisable. In international cases, as a sovereign and under established principles of international law, the Queen of Australia is not subject to suit in foreign courts without her express consent. The prerogative of mercy lies with the monarch, and is exercised in the state jurisdictions by the governors, who may pardon offences against the Crown, either before, during, or after a trial.
In addition, the monarch also serves as a symbol of the legitimacy of courts of justice, and of their judicial authority; sessions of the High Court, for example, are opened with the words "the High Court of Australia is now in session; God Save the Queen." In a practice dating back to colonial times, state courts traditionally display the arms of the sovereign in right of the United Kingdom, except in New South Wales and Queensland where some of these have been replaced with the state arms.
Members of the Royal Family have been present in Australia since the late 1800s, on military manoeuvres, for official tours, or as the vice-regal representative of the monarch. The Queen was the first reigning monarch of Australia to set foot on Australian soil on 3 February 1954. The Queen has visited the country 16 times, usually on important milestones, anniversaries, or celebrations of Australian culture, while other royals have been asked to participate in lesser occasions. In these instances, when acting at the direction of the Australian Cabinet, they do so as monarch of Australia and members of the Royal Family, respectively, and carry out two types of duties: official and unofficial.
Official duties involve the sovereign representing the state at home or abroad, or other Royal Family members participating in a government-organised ceremony either in Australia or elsewhere.The sovereign and/or his or her family have participated in events such as various centennials and bicentennials; Australia Day; the openings of Olympic and other games; award ceremonies; D-Day commemorations; anniversaries of the monarch's accession; and the like. Other royals have participated in Australian ceremonies or undertaken duties abroad, such as Prince Charles at the Anzac Day ceremonies at Gallipoli, or when the Queen, Prince Charles, and Princess Anne participated in Australian ceremonies for the anniversary of D-Day in France in 2004. On 22 February 2009, Princess Anne represented the Queen at the National Bushfires Memorial Service in Melbourne. The Queen also showed her support for the people of Australia by making a personal statement about the bushfires and by also making a private donation to the Australian Red Cross Appeal. The Duke of Edinburgh was the first to sign a book of condolences at the Australian High Commission in London.
Unofficial duties are performed by Royal Family members on behalf of Australian organisations of which they may be patrons, through their attendance at charity events, visiting with members of the Australian Defence Force as Colonel-in-Chief, or marking certain key anniversaries. The invitation and expenses associated with these undertakings are usually borne by the associated organisation.
Apart from Australia, the Queen and other members of the Royal Family regularly perform public duties in the other 15 nations of the Commonwealth in which the Queen is sovereign. As the Crown within these countries is a legally separate entity from the Australian Crown, it is funded in these countries individually, through the ordinary legislative budgeting process.
The monarchy is currently symbolised through images of the sovereign on currency and in portraits in public buildings; on Australian decorations and honours, some postage stamps and on coats of arms and other government symbols. The crown is used as a heraldic symbol in the coats of arms of the Commonwealth and the states of Victoria, Queensland and Western Australia. Crowns are also visible on police and military badges. The Queen's Birthday is observed as a public holiday in all states.
"God Save the Queen" is Australia's royal anthem. The "Vice-Regal Salute", played only for the Governor-General and each state governor, is the first four and last four bars of "Advance Australia Fair".
There are also hundreds of places named after Australian and British monarchs and members of the Royal Family. The states of Queensland and Victoria were named after Queen Victoria; Adelaide, the capital of South Australia is named after Queen Adelaide, the consort of William IV; numerous streets, squares, parks and buildings are also named in honour of past or present members of the Royal Family.
Until its new constitution went into force in 1962, the Anglican Church of Australia was part of the Church of England. Its titular head was consequently the monarch, in his or her capacity as Supreme Governor of the Church of England.However, unlike in England, Anglicanism was never established as a state religion in Australia.
The Governor-General's official residence is Government House, commonly known as "Yarralumla", in the city of Canberra. The Australian monarch stays there when visiting Canberra, as do visiting heads of state.Government House is the site of most state banquets, investitures, swearing-in of ministers, and other ceremonies. Another vice-regal residence is Admiralty House, in Sydney, and is used principally as a retreat for the Governor-General. The Australian states also maintain official residences for their respective governors, though the monarch or other members of the Royal Family may stay there when in the state.
The Crown has a place in the Australian Defence Force (ADF), which consists of the Royal Australian Navy, Australian Army, and Royal Australian Air Force.
Section 68 of the Australian Constitution says: "The command in chief of the naval and military forces of the Commonwealth is vested in the Governor-General as the Queen's representative." In practice, however, the Governor-General does not play any part in the ADF's command structure other than following the advice of the Minister for Defence in the normal form of executive government.
Australian naval vessels bear the prefix Her Majesty's Australian Ship (HMAS) and many regiments carry the "royal" prefix.Members of the Royal Family have presided over military ceremonies, including Trooping the Colours, inspections of the troops, and anniversaries of key battles. When the Queen is in Canberra, she lays a wreath at the Australian War Memorial. In 2003, the Queen acted in her capacity as Australian monarch when she dedicated the Australian War Memorial in Hyde Park, London.
Some members of the Royal Family are Colonels-in-Chief of Australian regiments, including: the Royal Regiment of Australian Artillery; Royal Australian Army Medical Corps; the Royal Australian Armoured Corps and the Royal Australian Corps of Signals, amongst many others. The Queen's husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, is an Admiral of the Fleetin right of the Royal Australian Navy, Marshal of the Royal Australian Air Force, and Field Marshal of the Australian Army.
The development of a distinctly Australian monarchy came about through a complex set of incremental events, beginning in 1770, when Captain James Cook, in the name of, and under instruction from, King George III, claimed the east coast of Australia. –by which colonial laws deemed repugnant to imperial (British) law in force in the colony were rendered void and inoperative –remained in force in both the federal and state spheres; and all the governors, both of the Commonwealth and the states, remained appointees of the British monarch on the advice of the British Cabinet, a situation that continued even after Australia was recognised as a Dominion of the British Empire in 1907.Colonies were eventually founded across the continent, all of them ruled by the monarch of the United Kingdom, upon the advice of his or her British ministers, the Secretary of State for the Colonies, in particular. After Queen Victoria's granting of Royal Assent to the Commonwealth of Australia Constitution Act on 9 July 1900, which brought about Federation in 1901, whereupon the six colonies became the states of Australia, the relationship between the state governments and the Crown remained as it was pre-1901: References in the constitution to "the Queen" meant the government of the United Kingdom (in the formation of which Australians had no say) and the Colonial Laws Validity Act 1865
In response to calls from some Dominions for a re-evaluation in their status under the Crown after their sacrifice and performance in the First World War, 110 a series of Imperial Conferences was held in London, from 1917 on, which resulted in the Balfour Declaration of 1926, which provided that the United Kingdom and the Dominions were to be considered as "autonomous communities within the British Empire, equal in status, in no way subordinate to one another in any aspect of their domestic or external affairs, though united by a common allegiance to the Crown." The Royal and Parliamentary Titles Act, 1927, an Act of the Westminster Parliament, was the first indication of a shift in the law, before the Imperial Conference of 1930 established that the Australian Cabinet could advise the sovereign directly on the choice of Governor-General, which ensured the independence of the office. The Crown was further separated amongst its dominions by the Statute of Westminster 1931, and, though it was not adopted by Australia until 1942 (retroactive to 3 September 1939), the law's validity in the United Kingdom required its government to seek Australia's consent in allowing the abdication of Edward VIII as the King of Australia and all the other Dominions in 1936.:
The Curtin Labor Government appointed Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester, as Governor-General during the Second World War. Curtin hoped the appointment might influence the British to despatch men and equipment to the Pacific War, and the selection of the brother of King George VI reaffirmed the important role of the Crown to the Australian nation at that time.The Queen became the first reigning monarch to visit Australia in 1954, greeted by huge crowds across the nation. Her son Prince Charles attended school in Australia in 1967. Her grandson Prince Harry undertook a portion of his gap-year living and working in Australia in 2003.
The sovereign did not possess a title unique to Australia until the Australian parliament enacted the Royal Styles and Titles Act in 1953, –at least in theory, if not with some difficulty in practice –legislate for the Australian states, and the viceroys in the states were appointed by and represented the sovereign of the United Kingdom, not that of Australia; as late as 1976, the British ministry advised the Queen to reject Colin Hannah as the nominee of the Queensland Cabinet for governor, and court cases from Australian states could be appealed directly to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council in London, thereby bypassing the Australian High Court. It was with the passage of the Australia Act in 1986, which repealed the Colonial Laws Validity Act and abolished appeals of state cases to London, that the final vestiges of the British monarchy in Australia were removed, leaving a distinct Australian monarchy for the nation. The view in the Republic Advisory Committee's report in 1993 was that if, in 1901, Victoria, as Queen-Empress, symbolised the British Empire of which all Australians were subjects, all of the powers vested in the monarch under Australia's Constitution were now exercised on the advice of the Australian government. In practice, the Queen's representative in Australia, the governor-general, represented the British Government directly in 1901 and until 1936, when the first High Commissioner of the United Kingdom to Australia was appointed.after the accession of Elizabeth to the throne, and giving her the title of Queen of the United Kingdom, Australia and Her other Realms and Territories. Still, Elizabeth remained both as a queen who reigned in Australia both as Queen of Australia (in the federal jurisdiction) and Queen of the United Kingdom (in each of the states), as a result of the states not wishing to have the Statute of Westminster apply to them, believing that the status quo better protected their sovereign interests against an expansionist federal government, which left the Colonial Laws Validity Act in effect. Thus, the British monarch could still
It was around the same time[ clarification needed ] that a discussion on the matter of Australia becoming a republic began to emerge, later culminating in the 1999 Australian republic referendum, which was defeated by 54.4% of the populace, despite polls showing that the majority supported becoming a republic. It is believed the proposed model of the republic (not having a directly elected president) was unsatisfactory to most Australians. The referendum followed the recommendation of a 1998 Constitutional Convention called to discuss the issue of Australia becoming a republic. Still, nearly another ten years later, Kevin Rudd was appointed as Prime Minister, whereafter he affirmed that a republic was still a part of his party's platform, and stated his belief that the debate on constitutional change should continue.
The previous Prime Minister, Julia Gillard re-affirmed her party's platform about a possible future republic. She stated that she would like to see Australia become a republic, with an appropriate time being when there is a change in monarch. A statement unaligned to this position was recorded on 21 October 2011 at a reception in the presence of the Queen at Parliament House in Canberra when Gillard stated that the monarch is "a vital constitutional part of Australian democracy and would only ever be welcomed as a beloved and respected friend."The then Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott, a former head of Australians for Constitutional Monarchy stated on 21 October 2011, "Your Majesty, while 11 prime ministers and no less than 17 opposition leaders have come and gone, for 60 years you have been a presence in our national story and given the vagaries of public life, I'm confident that this will not be the final tally of the politicians that you have outlasted."
A Morgan poll taken in October 2011 found that support for constitutional change was at its lowest for 20 years. Of those surveyed 34% were pro-republic as opposed to 55% pro-monarchist, preferring to maintain the current constitutional arrangements.A peer-reviewed study published in the Australian Journal of Political Science in 2016 found that there had been a significant improvement to support for monarchy in Australia after a twenty-year rapid decline following the 1992 annus horribilis .
A poll in November 2018 found support for the monarchy has climbed to a record high.
|Reign over Australia||Full name||Consort|
|1|| George III |
House of Hanover
|29 April 1770||29 January 1820||George William Frederick||Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz|
|Governors of New South Wales: Arthur Phillip, John Hunter, Philip King, William Bligh, Lachlan Macquarie|
|2|| George IV |
House of Hanover
|29 January 1820||26 June 1830||George Augustus Frederick||Caroline of Brunswick|
|Governors of New South Wales: Sir Thomas Brisbane, Sir Ralph Darling|
|3|| William IV |
House of Hanover
|26 June 1830||20 June 1837||William Henry||Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen|
|Governor of New South Wales: Sir Richard Bourke |
Governor of Western Australia: Sir James Stirling
Governor of South Australia: Sir John Hindmarsh
|4|| Victoria |
House of Hanover
|20 June 1837||22 January 1901||Alexandrina Victoria||Albert, Prince Consort|
|Governors of New South Wales: Sir George Gipps, Sir Charles FitzRoy, Sir William Denison, Sir John Young, Somerset Lowry-Corry, 4th Earl Belmore, Sir Hercules Robinson, Lord Augustus Loftus, Charles Wynn-Carington, 3rd Baron Carrington, Victor Child Villiers, 7th Earl of Jersey, Sir Robert Duff, Henry Brand, 2nd Viscount Hampden, William Lygon, 7th Earl Beauchamp |
Governors of Western Australia:Sir James Stirling, John Hutt, Sir Andrew Clarke, Charles Fitzgerald, Sir Arthur Kennedy , John Hampton, Sir Benjamin Pine, Sir Frederick Weld, Sir William Robinson, Sir Harry Ord, Sir Frederick Broome, Sir Gerard Smith
Governors of South Australia: George Gawler, Sir George Grey, Frederick Robe, Sir Henry Young, Sir Richard MacDonnell, Sir Dominick Daly, Sir James Fergusson, Sir Anthony Musgrave, Sir William Jervois, Sir William Robinson, Algernon Keith-Falconer, 9th Earl of Kintore, Sir Thomas Buxton, Hallam Tennyson, 2nd Baron Tennyson
Governors of Victoria: Sir Charles Hotham, Sir Henry Barkly, Sir Charles Darling, John Manners-Sutton, 3rd Viscount Canterbury, Sir Sir George Bowen, George Phipps, 2nd Marquess of Normanby, Sir Henry Loch, John Hope, 7th Earl of Hopetoun, Thomas Brassey, 1st Earl Brassey
Governors of Tasmania: Sir Henry Young, Sir Thomas Browne, Sir Charles Du Cane, Sir Frederick Weld, Sir John Lefroy, Sir George Strahan, Sir Robert Hamilton, Jenico Preston, 14th Viscount Gormanston
Governors of Queensland: Sir George Bowen, Samuel Blackall, George Phipps, 2nd Marquess of Normanby, Sir William Cairns, Sir Arthur Kennedy, Sir Anthony Musgrave, Sir Henry Norman, Charles Cochrane-Baillie, 2nd Baron Lamington
Governor-general: John Hope, 7th Earl of Hopetoun
Prime minister: Edmund Barton
|5|| Edward VII |
House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha
|22 January 1901||6 May 1910||Albert Edward||Alexandra of Denmark|
|Governors-general: John Hope, 7th Earl of Hopetoun, Hallam Tennyson, 2nd Baron Tennyson, Henry Northcote, 1st Baron Northcote, William Ward, 2nd Earl of Dudley |
Prime ministers: Sir Edmund Barton, Alfred Deakin, Chris Watson, George Reid, Alfred Deakin, Andrew Fisher, Alfred Deakin
|6|| George V |
House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha until 1917
House of Windsor after 1917
|6 May 1910||20 January 1936||George Frederick Ernest Albert||Mary of Teck|
|Governors-general: William Ward, 2nd Earl of Dudley, Thomas Denman, 3rd Baron Denman, Sir Ronald Ferguson, Henry Forster, 1st Baron Forster, John Baird, 1st Baron Stonehaven. Sir Isaac Isaacs |
Prime ministers: Andrew Fisher, Joseph Cook, Andrew Fisher, Billy Hughes, Stanley Bruce, James Scullin, Joseph Lyons
|7|| Edward VIII |
House of Windsor
|20 January 1936||11 December 1936||Edward Albert Christian George Andrew Patrick David||none|
|Governors-general: Sir Isaac Alfred Isaacs, Alexander Hore-Ruthven, 1st Earl of Gowrie |
Prime ministers: Joseph Lyons
|8|| George VI |
House of Windsor
|11 December 1936||6 February 1952||Albert Frederick Arthur George||Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon|
|Governors-general: Alexander Hore-Ruthven, 1st Earl of Gowrie, Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester, Sir William McKell |
Prime ministers: Joseph Lyons, Sir Earle Page, Robert Menzies, Arthur Fadden, John Curtin, Frank Forde, Ben Chifley, Sir Robert Menzies
|9|| Elizabeth II |
House of Windsor
|6 February 1952||Incumbent||Elizabeth Alexandra Mary||Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark|
|Governors-general: Sir William McKell, Sir William Slim, William Morrison, 1st Viscount Dunrossil, William Sidney, 1st Viscount De L'Isle, Richard Casey, Baron Casey, Sir Paul Hasluck, Sir John Kerr, Sir Zelman Cowen, Sir Ninian Stephen, William Hayden, Sir William Deane, Peter Hollingworth, Michael Jeffery, Dame Quentin Bryce, Sir Peter Cosgrove |
Prime ministers: Sir Robert Menzies, Harold Holt, John McEwen, John Gorton, William McMahon, Gough Whitlam, Malcolm Fraser, Bob Hawke, Paul Keating, John Howard, Kevin Rudd, Julia Gillard, Kevin Rudd, Tony Abbott, Malcolm Turnbull, Scott Morrison
Royal assent is the method by which a monarch formally approves an act of the legislature. In some jurisdictions, royal assent is equivalent to promulgation, while in others that is a separate step. Under a modern constitutional monarchy royal assent is considered to be little more than a formality; even in those nations which still, in theory, permit the monarch to withhold assent to laws, the monarch almost never does so, save in a dire political emergency or upon the advice of their government. While the power to veto a law by withholding royal assent was once exercised often by European monarchs, such an occurrence has been very rare since the eighteenth century.
The monarchy of New Zealand is the constitutional system of government in which a hereditary monarch is the sovereign and head of state of New Zealand. The current monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, ascended the throne on the death of her father, King George VI, on 6 February 1952.
The Government of Australia is the government of the Commonwealth of Australia, a federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy. It is also commonly referred to as the Australian Government, the Commonwealth Government, Her Majesty's Government, or the Federal Government.
The monarchy of Solomon Islands is a system of government in which a constitutional monarch is the head of state of Solomon Islands. The present monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, who is also the head of state of fifteen other Commonwealth realms.
Antigua and Barbuda is a constitutional monarchy and a Commonwealth realm, with Queen Elizabeth II as its reigning monarch and head of state since 1 November 1981. As such she is Antigua and Barbuda's sovereign and officially called Queen of Antigua and Barbuda.
The monarchy of Jamaica is a constitutional system of government in which a hereditary monarch and head of state is the sovereign of Jamaica. The terms Crown in Right of Jamaica, Her Majesty in Right of Jamaica, or The Queen in Right of Jamaica may also be used to refer to the entire executive of the government of Jamaica. Though the Jamaican Crown has its roots in the British Crown, it has evolved to become a distinctly Jamaican institution, represented by its own unique symbols.
The monarch of Belize is the head of state of Belize. The incumbent is Queen Elizabeth II, officially called Queen of Belize, who has reigned since 21 September 1981. The heir apparent is Elizabeth's eldest son, Prince Charles, though the Queen is the only member of the royal family with any constitutional role. She, her husband and consort, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Charles, and other members of the royal family, including the Queen's other children and cousins, undertake various public ceremonial functions across Belize and on behalf of Belize abroad.
The Monarchy of Barbados is the core of the country's Westminster style parliamentary democracy, being the foundation of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the government. The current Barbadian monarch and head of state, since 6 February 1952, is Queen Elizabeth II. As the sovereign, she is the personal embodiment of the Barbadian Crown. Although the person of the sovereign is equally shared with 15 other independent countries within the Commonwealth of Nations, each country's monarchy is separate and legally distinct. As a result, the current monarch is officially titled Queen of Barbados and, in this capacity, she, her husband, and other members of the Royal Family undertake public and private functions domestically and abroad as representatives of the Barbadian state. However, the Queen is the only member of the Royal Family with any constitutional role. The Queen lives predominantly in the United Kingdom and, while several powers are the sovereign's alone, most of the royal governmental and ceremonial duties in Barbados are carried out by the Queen's representative, the governor-general.
The Monarchy of the Bahamas is a system of government in which a hereditary monarch is the sovereign of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas. The current monarch and head of state is Queen Elizabeth II, who has reigned since the country became independent on 10 July 1973. The Bahamas share the Sovereign with the other Commonwealth realms. The Queen does not personally reside in the islands, and most of her constitutional roles are therefore delegated to her representative in the country, the Governor-General of the Bahamas. Royal succession is governed by the English Act of Settlement of 1701, as amended by the Succession to the Crown Act 2013 of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, with the latter statute reflecting the Perth Agreement, to which the Bahamas government acceded. The two acts are part of constitutional law.
The monarch of Grenada is the head of state of Grenada. The present monarch is Elizabeth II, who is also Sovereign of a number of the other Commonwealth realms. The Queen's constitutional roles are mostly delegated to the Governor-General of Grenada. Royal succession is governed by the English Act of Settlement of 1701, which is part of constitutional law.
The monarchy of Papua New Guinea is a system of government in which a hereditary monarch is the sovereign and head of state of Papua New Guinea. The current monarch, since 16 September 1975, is Queen Elizabeth II. Although the person of the sovereign is equally shared with 15 other independent countries within the Commonwealth of Nations, each country's monarchy is separate and legally distinct. As a result, the current monarch is officially titled the Queen of Papua New Guinea and, in this capacity, she, her consort, and other members of the Royal Family undertake public and private functions domestically and abroad as representatives of the Papua New Guinean state. However, the Queen is the only member of the Royal Family with any constitutional role. The Queen lives predominantly in the United Kingdom and, while several powers are the sovereign's alone, most of the royal governmental and ceremonial duties in Papua New Guinea are carried out by the Queen's representative, the governor-general.
Saint Kitts and Nevis is a constitutional monarchy in which a monarch is head of state. The present monarch is Elizabeth II, who is also Sovereign of the other Commonwealth realms. The Queen's constitutional roles are mostly delegated to the Governor-General of Saint Kitts and Nevis. Royal succession is governed by the English Act of Settlement of 1701, which is part of constitutional law.
The monarchy of Saint Lucia is a system of government in which a hereditary, constitutional monarch is the sovereign and head of state of Saint Lucia. The present monarch of Saint Lucia is Elizabeth II, who is also the Sovereign of the Commonwealth realms. The Queen's constitutional roles are mostly delegated to the Governor-General of Saint Lucia.
The monarchy of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is the constitutional system of government in which a hereditary monarch is the sovereign and head of state of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, forming the core of the country's Westminster-style parliamentary democracy. The Crown is thus is the foundation of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the Vincentian government. While Royal Assent and the royal sign-manual are required to enact laws, letters patent, and orders in council, the authority for these acts stems from the Vincentian populace, and, within the conventional stipulations of constitutional monarchy, the sovereign's direct participation in any of these areas of governance is limited, with most related powers entrusted for exercise by the elected and appointed parliamentarians, the ministers of the Crown generally drawn from amongst them, and the judges and Justices of the Peace.
The monarchy of Tuvalu is a system of government in which a hereditary monarch is the sovereign and head of state of Tuvalu. The present monarch of Tuvalu is Queen Elizabeth II, who is also the Sovereign of 15 other Commonwealth realms. The Queen's constitutional roles are mostly delegated to the Governor-General of Tuvalu.
Australia is a constitutional monarchy whose Sovereign also serves as Monarch of the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Canada and eleven other former dependencies of the United Kingdom including Papua New Guinea, which was formerly a dependency of Australia. These countries operate as independent nations, and are known as Commonwealth realms. The history of the Australian monarchy has involved a shifting relationship with both the distant monarch and also the British government.
There are six monarchies in Oceania; that is: self-governing sovereign states in Oceania where supreme power resides with an individual hereditary head, who is recognised as the head of state. Each is a constitutional monarchy, wherein the sovereign inherits his or her office, usually keeps it until death or abdication, and is bound by laws and customs in the exercise of their powers. Five of these independent states share Queen Elizabeth II as their respective head of state, making them part of a global grouping known as the Commonwealth realms; in addition, all monarchies of Oceania are members of the Commonwealth of Nations. The only sovereign monarchy in Oceania that does not share a monarch with another state is Tonga. Australia and New Zealand have dependencies within the region and outside it, although five non-sovereign constituent monarchs are recognized by New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and France.
The Australian head of state dispute refers to ongoing debate as to who is considered to be the head of state of Australia—the Monarch, the Governor-General, or both. Head of state is a description used in official sources for the monarch. The Australian constitution does not mention the term head of state. In discussion it has been used for describing the person who holds the highest rank among the officers of government. A number of writers, most notably David Smith, have argued that the term is better used to describe the governor-general. The difference of opinion has mainly been discussed in the context of Australia becoming a republic, and was prominently debated in the lead-up to the republic referendum in 1999.
The royal prerogative is a body of customary authority, privilege, and immunity, recognized in common law and, sometimes, in civil law jurisdictions possessing a monarchy, as belonging to the sovereign and which have become widely vested in the government. It is the means by which some of the executive powers of government, possessed by and vested in a monarch with regard to the process of governance of the state, are carried out.
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