Why was Elise Archer overlooked for Attorney-General?
Premier instead opting for constitutionally risky scenario
Legal and political experts critical of the Premier taking on dual roles
Proper practice is to separate the two critical roles
Will Hodgman must address serious concerns raised over whether it’s appropriate to carry out the functions of Premier and Attorney-General at the same time.
Shadow Attorney-General Lara Giddings said risks have been highlighted.
“Constitutional law experts are saying it’s a risk,” Ms Giddings said.
“You have to ask why the Premier didn’t make trained legal practitioner Elise Archer Attorney-General.
“Why not avoid the conflict of interest and the associated risks by separating the roles?
“The role of Attorney-General and the role of Premier are not compatible.”
Senior lecturer in Constitutional Law, Brendan Gogarty told the ABC: “In one person you have the role of driving policy, and the other role being the brakes on policy, or at least the deliberation on whether policy is a good idea from a legal perspective,”
“I don’t think these are the types of exceptional circumstances that justify merging probably the two most powerful roles in government together in one person,”
Respected political analyst Richard Herr has said “it’s an unwise situation”.
“The Premier could have easily avoided this conflict of interest by making Elise Archer the AG,” Ms Giddings said.
“Ms Archer is clearly qualified for the role. Why did the Premier overlook her for this crucial position?
“It would appear to me that either the Premier has no confidence in Ms Archer to perform the role of AG or they have a fractured personal relationship which is getting in the way of good governance.
“Will Hodgman needs to explain what advice he sought before making this highly unusual decision.”
Lara Giddings MP Shadow Attorney-General