Legal Definitions

  1. Bicameral
    Two houses of parliament
  2. Cabinet
    A policy-making body comprising of the Prime Minister and senior government ministers
  3. Crown
    The authority of the Queen. Represented by the Governor-General at federal level and the governor at state level
  4. Federation
    A union of sovereign states that relinquish some powers to a central authority, in order to form a nation
  5. Government
    Formed by the political party which holds the majority of seats in the lower house
  6. Legislation
    Laws made by parliament, known as statutes
  7. Minister
    A member of the government who has a particular responsibility such as being in charge of a government department
  8. Parliament
    The supreme law-making body consisting of all elected members of both houses from all political parties and the Crown's representative
  9. Royal Assent
    The signing of a bill by the Governor-General in order for it to become law
  10. Separation of Powers
    The principle of keeping the powers of the executive, legislature and judiciary separate so that the government does not become tyrannical in nature and is kept accountable
  11. Statute
    An act of parliament
  12. Supremacy of parliament
    This refers to the concept that the final law-making power rests with parliament
  13. Westminster Principles
    A set of principles which underpin our parliamentary system, inherited from the United Kingdom, known as the Westminster system. These principles are representative government, responsible government and the separation of powers
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