Parliament works best when the government controls both houses.

Parliament works best when the government controls both houses.

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Even before federation, our country had adopted and used a Democratic system of government. Democracy has played a major role in our system of government as it has developed over the decades since it was brought to Australian shores by the English and the first democratic parliaments were created. Over time Democracy has grown stronger as this system became the foundation of our society. Democracy in our government must also have an efficient system for it to function properly otherwise the disagreements in parliament and different views on issues in Australia would tear our government apart. But how far can we go in our government before its Efficiency begins to affect our Democracy. A balance of Democracy vs. Efficiency has been engulfed in our Parliaments with Australia having a bicameral system. However it is very well possible for this to favour a more efficient system if the government manages gains control of both Houses.

Democracy can be easily defined as a “rule of government by the people, and for the people”. Whilst incorporating the principles of majority rule, the protection of minority rights, equal participation, fair and frequent elections and the rule of law. This is done through elected representatives by the public. In our government we have political parties (interest groups) of people acting in politics to secure goals which they think are important and nearly always acting on behalf of other people whom they say think these goals are important too. The common complexity of this is that these goals often clash with other political party’s that have other issues and views. The biggest example of this is the clash between the Liberal Party and the Australian Labour Party. The goal of Democracy is to let the people have there say and for the representatives to decide on the best decision for the Commonwealth and the people.

A definition of Efficiency can be described as productive whilst using the minimum waste or effort. In relation to politics, our system is an efficient and working government. Our Legislative sector of government has proven itself as a working system in our commonwealth and has had no major issues with its process.

In most cases after elections the party with the majority in the lower house which has formed government usually does not have control of the upper house. The control usually hangs with the smaller parties and independents and they hold the balance of power which can decide the fate of bills that have been sent from the lower house.

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If the party that has control of the lower house gains control of the upper house after an election this changes one party’s dominance in both houses. In this case the Party with the majority in the lower house which has formed government can pass any of there bills through both houses assuming that all members vote on there parties side. This gives the governing party the power to conduct anything they wish without having the bill altered or amended when facing the upper house.

This power for a party allows many bills to be passed in both houses without much rejection to slow the bill from being passed. This creates a fast and efficient government and allows issues to have a resolution passed in both houses without any rebuttal to change or amend the bill. Our parliament has been said to be a room full of arguing idiots, in short terms, too much disagreement, too much difference, too much arguing and not enough solutions and compromises being formulated. With this power in just one party it resolves this problem by having less force against the bills being sent into the upper house and passed there. But is this the right solution? Yes, this resolves the problem of slow moving bills in the upper house but is it right one? Does having the government control both houses still keep our system as Democratic as it should be?

This issues sparks many concerns and controversies as it has been brought up that this creates a government that has no second view on issues, that it rules out a lot of the oppositions power and only allows the parliament to be run by a single dominate party. There are still many members of other parties in both houses but because only one party has the majority, there say in the proposed bill may be heard, but if the dominate party does not support the view in any way then there is little that the other parties can do then just sit back and be out voted. This just allows for only a one sided say, a one sided point of view and creates a one eyed system. Just like a Dictatorship but instead of having one representative with the final say it is spread out onto a party with the same say.

A fast and efficient government does not combine well with a democratic system. We may have a smooth and efficient government but only to the degree of still holding our democratic features and quality, which is the foundation to our system. Our system should be kept as Democratic as it can be. Our system was created so that all views could be brought into consideration and the views of the people. Democracy is not about the efficiency of our government but solely about making the best decisions for the people. With only one view, Democracy in our government becomes degraded and the decisions made will only benefit a limited amount of Australians.

The government controlling both houses affects our Democracy in our parliaments. With Democracy being affected this is a push away from our system of government. This may be distinguished in many ways and looked upon with different views but the fact of the matter is that any step away from Democracy in our government cannot be a good one. Parliament may necessarily work better in the sense of faster flowing bills through both houses but does it work better and maintain the democratic features that our parliaments have grown into over the many years of their existence? Looking at the issue from a Democratic view, this is an incorrect step in our system and democracy should constantly be more significant and vital then the efficiency in our parliaments.

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