You must have heard a lot of crap being flung around during the spill about "mandates" and "being elected to do a job". Guess what? There is no fucking mandate! We do not fucking elect governments, let alone Prime Ministers!
We vote for 1 person per division. 1. If you are lucky enough to live in a swinging electorate, then your vote is worth something, and money will flow into your electorate. If you are in a safe electorate for one of the major parties (like, ahem, Bankstown), your vote means shit. It is so shit that sometimes the party machine will put into the electorate someone who is unelectable anywhere else (like a union boss or religious fundy nutjob who is tight with the party).
So we vote for one person. And chances are, that person is not even who you voted for. Anyway, the person the majority of the people in your division voted for (or snuck in on preference deals that makes Antony Green's head explode) goes to Canberra. There the Governor General will ask all the people who managed to win their electorate "Who shall become the Government".
So it is Parliament, not the people, who elect the government. And the Prime Minister. Generally elected by the government. So even LESS people vote on who leads the government than who vote to FORM government.
And the powers of a Prime Minister. According to the constitution, none. NOT EVEN MENTIONED! All that is mentioned is that a "Council of Ministers" shall advise the Governor General. There is NO FUCKING CABINET mentioned EITHER!
You don't need a cabinet. Gough and Lance Barnard formed a duumvirate where all the ministries where split between Gough and Barnard for 2 weeks. PERFECTLY LEGAL!
Governments and Cabinets can take any form Parliament allows. All you need is the numbers. And not from the voters, but from the political drones you idiots elected to go there. Don't you feel like an idiot now? Huh?
So, next time you hear someone mention "MANDATE" to you, you are authorised by me, Former PM Paul Keating, to beat the fucking shit out of them. Those people are to dumb to live. And if it was a politician who says it, kill their whole fucking family, to prevent the posion in the gene pool to expand.