BTN – The Speaker

http://www.abc.net.au/btn/story/s4287356.htm

Summary

Facts

Questions

Insights

This video was mainly about the role of the person in parliament called the speaker, what they do, their history, and some of the harder things you need to do if you are the speaker.

The speaker is a really important job. They run the whole house of reps and they make sure it does not get too rowdy. They also tell people when they can speak, when their speaking time is up, and they can actually give out punishments if their  order is not followed.

The role of speaker dates back to 13th century England, where let me tell you, you DID NOT want to be speaker! See the speaker would deliver news from parliament to the king. If the king did not like this news, well generally they would take it out on the speaker. The speaker could get locked up, or even beheaded. Yeah, you DID NOT want to be speaker!

If you are the speaker, you have to treat all members of parliament fairly, you cannot take sides on argument on debates, and you can only vote in votes if there is a tie. Because of these restrictions, there is a tradition that when a new speaker comes into office they are escorted struggling to the speaker chair.

What was it like being the speaker between the 13th century and now?

Why can’t speakers vote?

I can tell being the speaker is a job that only someone who is patient and knows what they are doing can take on.

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