THE GRANT OF DISSOLUTION IN VICTORIA IN 1908–9
I N December 1908 Sir Thomas Carmichael, Governor of Victoria, granted a dissolution of the Legislative Assembly to the Premier, Sir Thomas Bent, who had been defeated by a majority of twelve on a direct vote of no confidence. The latter stated to the Governor that he
request: 'In the matter of granting or refusing a dissolution the Governor
tions, the Governor, answering an address from the Assembly dated February loth, 1909, referred to a further memorandum which he had prepared in December 1908, setting forth the considerations which had led him to decide in favour of dissolution. This may be summarized thus:
I. The Premier 'recognised that, especially on the matter of a I rates and Proceedings, Legis/ative AssemOly (rictoria). First Session,
This memorandum has been referred to in detail because it is of significance as illustrating the technique of a Governor's method of exercising his discretion when a dissolution is requested by a defeated Ministry, at a time when the popular House does not consist of two parties only, but of three or more groups, the likelihood of whose co-operation in Government is a material question. The stated grounds for the Governor's action call for some comment.