What is the difference between the Australian Parliament and the Australian Government?
Interesting question Floyd; the Australian Parliament and the Australian Government are not the same thing.
The Australian Parliament consists of the King (represented by the Governor-General), the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Parliament:
- makes new laws and amends – changes – existing laws
- represents the people of Australia
- scrutinises – closely examines – the work of the government.
The Australian Government is part of the Parliament. At a federal election, the party or coalition of parties with the support of the majority of members elected to the House of Representatives becomes the government. The leader of the government is the Prime Minister who is a member of the House of Representatives. The government:
- introduces bills – ideas for new laws or changes to existing ones – into parliament
- puts laws into action, through government departments
- develops national policies – plans of action – for areas including immigration and the environment.
The Australian Government is accountable to the Parliament and can be scrutinised by other members of parliament including the opposition, minor parties and independents. Members of parliament can scrutinise the work of the government through a variety of ways including during Question Time and Senate estimates.
Australian Parliament House.
This photo shows the front of Parliament House with the Great Verandah and the flagmast. In the foreground Michael Nelson Jagamara's Possum and Wallaby Dreaming mosaic is surrounded by water.
Permission should be sought from DPS AUSPIC for third-party or commercial uses of this image. To contact DPS AUSPIC email: firstname.lastname@example.org or phone: 02 6277 3342.