Just 4 months after England, the home of the parliamentary system that many commonwealth countries governance is based upon, formed a coalition government it looks like the same may happen in Australia.
“With 74.7 percent of the vote counted on a two-party preferred basis, Labor and the Liberal-National coalition were tied on 71 seats each in the 150-member House of Representatives, according to the Australian Electoral Commission as of 8:35 a.m. Seventy-six seats in the lower house are needed to form a government. The electorate also voted for 40 of the 76 seats in the upper house Senate.”
“At the close of counting last night, the probable composition of the upper chamber was 35 Coalition senators, 31 Labor senators, nine Greens senators and independent Nick Xenophon.
The lower house will take some time to decide but it is clear it will be a minority government between the (conservative) coalition, labor party, greens and that a coalition government with the greens is probable.”
“The Australian Greens won its first lower house seat in a general election as support for the party surged almost 50 percent, making it a potential power broker for the nation’s next government.”
It is interesting to note that the Harper regime is in a minority position and yet there is no coalition government in Canada. Is that due to Harpers arrogance, the oppositions weakness or a total ignorance of how coalitions work by both the Canadian public and our political “leaders”. It is also clear that no matter when the next election may come in Canada, and despite our antiquated electoral system, it will be another minority government, whether or not whoever receives the most seats (and thats not necessarily the most votes) will seek to form a coalition or leave us forever on the brink of an election due to political “games” in the House remains to be seen.
Bottom line – As citizens show their unhappiness with the traditional governing partys, minority and coalition governments are rapidly becoming the norm within countries with various forms of parliamentary democracies. Canada is no different, the choices may not be the same, the electoral system may influence the results somewhat, many of our politicians may say they would not consider forming a coalition, but the reality is that such cooperative governance is coming to a country near you. And the sooner the better from my point of view!