Inability to pass money bills through the parliament.
Refusing to resign after losing confidence of the parliament.
in relation to Justapassenger's comments above,
1 / the Liberal Country Party Coalition determined to block all Government Bill irrespective of merit, and up until that time had actually rejected more legislation whilst in Opposition than the total number of rejected since since federation in 1901.
( The LNP still holds the record for an Opposition rejecting 97% of Government Legislation. )
Senator Withers ( WA ) justified this on the grounds that as the ALP Government had secured less total votes ( though more seats ) than the Opposition, therefore the ALP Government was illegitimate, and all measures should be used to remove the Government.
2 / Any Government must have the Confidence of the House of Representatives to retain the confidence of Parliament. The Whitlam Government never lost a Confidence Motion in the House.
When Kerr appointed Fraser as PM, Fraser lost a Confidence Motion in the House and then called a General Election. Whilst calling a General Election after loosing a Confidence Motion is an option, it is not the only option. The other option is the House can call for a Confidence Motion for an alternate group of MPs, which, if they win, can then form a Government.
( It should be pointed out that the Menzies UAP Country Party Coalition lost a Confidence Motion in 1940, and the Curtain Labour Party won a subsequent Confidence Motion, and went on to form Government until the 1943 General Election, which the ALP also won.
This election was interesting for two reasons, firstly, those members of the Armed Forces who were under the then voting age of 21 were permitted to be enrolled to vote, my late father being one. Secondly, the ALPs landslide 1943 election win led to the demise of the UAP, and later on, the formation of the Menzies Liberal Party. )
( It should also be pointed out that Churchill formed a new Government in 1940 as a result of Chamberlain resigning. Churchill went on to form a Government of National Unity, which was a cross party Government , and which also extended the existing Parliament until the defeat of Germany. As a result, the 1940 general election was deferred until 1945.
This is not possible in Australia due to the Constitution specifying the maximum length of a parliament's term. )
3 / The Senate has no provision for a Confidence Motion in the Government the Day. The Senate is a House of Review, not a House of Government.
4 / The Rules of the Commonwealth Parliament are those pertaining to the British House of Commons as at Federation, per Section 49. Although the Rules have subsequently been amended, the principle of the Government only being required to enjoy the Confidence of the House of Representatives has not changed, and neither did, or currently does, the Senate have any Rule pertaining to a Confidence Motion in the Government.
5 / The intransigence displayed, especially by Senator Withers ( WA ) and Phillip Lynch ( Flinders, Victoria ) is not the way Parliament is supposed to work.
They could have chosen to amend Government legislation, or negotiate a compromise, but instead they determined to reject all Government legislation, some Money Bills excepted.
6 / I am therefore not impressed by Senator Cormann's argument that the ALP Opposition should recognise the Coalition's mandate to pass all Tax Cuts, especially when Stage 3 is not scheduled to commence until July 2024, which is half way into the next Parliament after the next General Election due in 2022.
It should also be pointed out that the past practice has been that a current Parliament does not direct a yet to be elected Parliament on future legislation.
7 / It was Opposition Leader Andrew Peacock ( he of the sunlamp ! ) who announced that the Liberal Party would only support a Constitutional Amendment if it is the Party of Government.
8 / It was Opposition Leader Tony Abbott who announced that only senior military leaders would be nominated for Governor General by a Liberal Government.