australian constitution Essay

Submitted By jaydos0
Words: 472
Pages: 2

Is it possible that the Australian constitution still reflects Australia? Taking a general view it can be said that it is sufficient, however, given that it is over one hundred years old it could also benefit from clarification.
When first considering the constitution the colonies were largely supportive of the British parliamentary system; however, there was also support for America's constitutional changes had an effect on the way they considered the future of Australia. While they did not wish to break British ties as America had done, they saw benefits to the American system of ‘federalism'. As none of the colonies was keen on forfeiting all of their power to a central government, they decide to adopt a hybrid of the American federal system and the British parliamentary system effectively limiting the national government to particular areas. When they adopted this, they were aware that there may be a conflict between the two systems, but considered the conventions they were adopting would provide enough guidance to manage them.
The constitution is a highly legalistic document which is vague on details, which makes its' suitability as the body of superior law in Australia questionable. Along with this due to events that occurred after the constitution was written much of society, and government has changed. The shaping of the constitution meant it was also essential to create a mediator, the High Court, who manages disagreements between States and the Commonwealth. In recent years they have come under fire, being accused of ‘activism' by interpreting the law away from strictly black letter law, to a more socio-political clarification. Taking into account these factors, several calls, have been made to modernize the constitution. There have been calls for a Republic; effort's to reduce Senate power; calls for centralization, either through scattering or replacing states with lesser powered ‘regional' governments. (Aitken & Orr, 2002,).