Two Refusals of Royal Assent in Victoria

Sydney Law Review, Vol. 29, No. 1, pp. 85-130, 2007

Monash University Faculty of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2007/39

47 Pages Posted: 24 Apr 2009  

Greg Taylor

University of Adelaide - School of Law; University of Marburg; RMIT University - Graduate School of Business and Law

Date Written: April 20, 2009

Abstract

The Governor of Victoria, having objected to two Bills passed by Parliament in the 1850s, received advice from the colonial government to refuse assent to them. These are the only occasions on which the Royal assent has been refused locally in Victoria, and one of the very few such incidents in Australian history. One of the Bills would have implied a statement that UK law of the day was incompatible with religious liberty, and thus raised sectarian and Imperial complications; the other was a constitutional amendment passed without following the prescribed procedure. This article reconstructs the events and the public reaction, as far as possible; considers whether the Governor acted rightly; and concludes that the Crown should refuse assent if advised to do so by its Ministers, despite occasional views to the contrary.

Keywords: Refusal, Royal Assent, Victoria, Parliament

JEL Classification: K0, K00, K29, K40, K49

Suggested Citation

Taylor, Greg, Two Refusals of Royal Assent in Victoria (April 20, 2009). Sydney Law Review, Vol. 29, No. 1, pp. 85-130, 2007; Monash University Faculty of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2007/39. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1357106

Greg Taylor (Contact Author)

University of Adelaide - School of Law ( email )

Ligertwood Building
Adelaide 5005, South Australia SA 5005
Australia

University of Marburg ( email )

Universitätsstrasse 24
Marburg, D-35032
Germany

RMIT University - Graduate School of Business and Law ( email )

Melbourne
Australia

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