Writing this morning in the Spectator Australia, the IPA’s Andrew Bushnell advocates for an increased number of members of parliament:
TAFKAS is not sure that it will “give us better service” but it will improve Australia’s democracy. Bushnell advocates for both an increase in the number of MPs and of Senators.
So for whatever it is worth, YES and NO. YES for more MPs. Hell NO for more senators. In fact, ITHO (In TAFKAS’ humble opinion), there should be fewer senators.
A little known fact is that at the US constitutional convention, the draft first amendment was not about free speech and religion. The current US first amendment was actually the draft third amendment.
The draft first amendment was about fixing the number of citizens to the number of members of congress such that the size of the US congress would “breath” in size with the population. This was the only draft amendment that was argued for by George Washington, yet as history shows, it did not get ratified.
Another unmentioned benefit of more members in the House of Reps is that it increased the gene pool of people who can be appointed to the Executive Council. For as long as the Constitution requires ministers to be members of parliament, this limits the “talent pool” to the factional quacks that can get into parliament. Increasing the number of MPs could improve the quality of our cabinet ministers because it certainly could not get worse.
As for the Senate, ITHO, the numbers should be reduced and not increased and more so, to truly make it a State’s House, Senators should be appointed by State Parliaments. Senators, because they are not popularly election should also be BANNED from serving as Ministers.
The other unstated benefit of more MPs and fewer Senators nominated by the States is that it would make passing legislation all the more harder.
Now would not these changes make it more interesting.