Elect The Governor General

Currently, the Prime Minister can advise the Sovereign to appoint pretty much whoever they want as Governor-General. Since the Governor-General has significant constitutional powers in the formation and dissolution of governments, the power of their appointment should rest with the elected representatives of New Zealand, not just the Prime Minister.

The Bill I have submitted follows overseas practice, as used in Italy, Samoa and Israel to elect their heads of state. A candidate requires a super majority of two-thirds of MPs to be elected as Governor-General, and at least half of the parties represented in the House. This is so neither of the major parties can stitch up a deal for their favoured candidate (There are currently 7 parties represented in Parliament - a candidate would need to gain votes from at least four parties). The German and Indian systems are similar also, however, they use a combination of state and federal legislators to elect their presidents, requiring an overall majority of these two groups.

The Bill also defines the Governor-General's term in law as five years (as it is already de facto), and bars them from serving successive terms (again de facto practice).


  • This may be seen as a move towards republicanism, as opposed to a more democratic monarchy.
  • This isn't a progressive bill as such, it's aimed at creating "training wheels" for a republic, not strictly a left-wing issue

Constitution (Election of Governor-General) Amendment Bill

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