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A Comparison of Its Government to That of the United States of America

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AUSTRALIA Ð'-

A comparison of its government to that of the United States of America

Australia, a federal parliamentary democracy, is an independent self-governing state and a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. The constitution of Australia, which became effective in 1901, is based on British parliamentary traditions, and includes elements of the United States system. The constitution of Australia is a written one like that of the United States.

The Australian government considers the right to vote in elections a great and responsible privilege. Whenever elections are held in Australia, there is usually a ninety percent turnout for the elections. There is a good reason for the high turnout for the elections Ð'- voters are fined for not exercising their right to vote. Perhaps here in the United States, this law should be placed into effect. Our country Ð''s constitution is based on freedoms and one of them being having the right to vote. At the national level, elections are held at least once every three years. The governor-general for the House of Representatives can call for an election at any time, which causes major changes in the ruling party of the Australian government.

When our forefathers founded our great country, a provision was written into the Constitution that a President with a Congress, consisting of a Senate and a House of Representatives would govern the United States. Australia's government is very different, even though some of the terms are similar, because the monarch of the United Kingdom is considered the monarch of Australia. At the present time it is Queen Elizabeth II. The monarch has very little power in the government of Australia. However, Australia has never realized the complete break of freedom from the United Kingdom. A referendum was placed before the population of Australia on November 6, 1999, to replace the monarch of the United Kingdom (Queen Elizabeth II) as head-of-state with a President of Australia. The referendum was not passed.

The government of the United States has declared that national elections will be held every four years for our president. This allows the party that is in power to pursue and accomplish several items of their agenda during their time in office. However, in Australia, the ruling party of Australia can change whenever an election is called. This causes major confusion and turmoil in the government. The stabilizing effect of our form of government cannot be achieved in Australia. It seems that the Australians prefer to have a great amount of pomp and circumstance of their "mother country" Ð'- England. Having so much change in a country could not be very good for the economy of that country.

Another major difference between the governments of Australia and the United States is the amount of power the states have compared to that of the national governments. In Australia, the states do not operate as independently of the federal government as our states operate. The Australian states have heavy administrative responsibilities

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