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§ 85. “The Term of Service of a Senator.”

After the Senate first meets, and after each first meeting following a dissolution, the senators are classified according to the scheme in the first paragraph in this section; thereupon the place or seat of each senator is identified with a term of service annexed to it. That term is not exhausted by the death, disqualification or resignation of the


  ― 434 ―
senator. His successor is elected to occupy the place or seat for the remainder of the term. By this paragraph of the section the precise date of the beginning of each term of service is defined. The beginning of a term does not depend upon such uncertain events as the date of the election, the return of the writs, or the swearing in of senators, but on the words of the section itself. On the occasion of the first election of senators, after the establishment of the Commonwealth, the term of service is deemed to have begun on the first day of January preceding the day of election. On the occasion of every general election of senators, the term of service is deemed to have begun on the first day of January preceding the day of election. But, in the case of senators elected to fill places or seats which will become vacant by effluxion of time, the term of service is deemed to begin on the first day of January following the day of election. The new term of service will thus begin at the expiration of the preceding term; although the elections will take place during the currency of the term. Hence it may arise that there will be senators actually in office, their term being unexpired, and senators elect, chosen to succeed the senators in office, but whose terms do not begin until the first day of January following their election.

Further provision for rotation86.

14. Whenever the number of senators for a State is increased or diminished, the Parliament of the Commonwealth may make such provision for the vacating of the places of senators for the State as it deems necessary to maintain regularity in the rotation.

HISTORICAL NOTE.—A clause, in substantially this form, was inserted as a drafting amendment at the Melbourne session, before the first report. After the fourth report it was amended, by the substitution of “may” instead of “shall as soon as may be.”

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