A group of WA Liberals has put secessionism back on the agenda in a renewed push for WA’s own version of Brexit and become an independent nation.
The so-called WAxit (WA exit) comes amidst anger over the state’s low GST share. However experts say the cost of funding our own public health system, establishing our own armed forces and all the practical aspects of breaking away from Australia make it unrealistic.
Let’s examine what is actually being proposed
- The Liberal Party’s Brand Division has set up a WAxit committee to examine the option of Western Australia becoming an independent state within the Commonwealth.
- The issue has come up many times before – it has been regularly debated ever since WA signed up to the Federation more than 100 years ago.
- In 1933 two thirds of West Australians voted to secede.
Why is WAxit on the agenda?
In a nutshell, people are angry. There is a feeling that WA gets a raw deal from the Commonwealth, with advocates citing the state’s low GST share as the main driver for the push to secede.
Is it even possible?
Constitutional experts have long dismissed the prospect of secession in this country. Any serious secession attempt would need to start with a vote in favour in WA.
However what would need to happen beyond that is unclear. For starters, like any other nation, we would have to fund our own military, health and education systems, and print our own currency. West Australians would even need a passport to visit any other state.
Then there’s sport. Imagine WA up against Australia in cricket and football!