David Mitchell (lawyer)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

David Charles Mitchell (born 1933 or 1934[1]) is a retired minister of the Presbyterian Church of Australia and a specialist in constitutional law.

Mitchell was born in Tasmania where he was educated[1] and admitted to the bar on 4 February 1958. In due course he was also admitted to the bar in Victoria, New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory, South Australia, West Australia, England and Lesotho.[2]

Mitchell worked for the British Colonial Service in the Bechuanaland Protectorate, now known as Botswana,[1] as an Assistant District Officer on probation in the Serowe District in the year following his appointment on March 24, 1960.[3][4] He subsequently joined the Commonwealth Public Service, where he was responsible for legal matters in Papua New Guinea for the then Department of External Territories. He transferred to the Attorney-General's Department, where he helped establish the Australian Legal Aid Office in 1974 before being seconded to Lesotho.[1]

Mitchell was Solicitor-General for Lesotho in October 1976, when Lesotho was in dispute with its neighbour South Africa over the closure of three border crossings into the Transkei, that was designed to pressure Lesotho into recognizing this "homeland" established by South Africa for its Bantu peoples. He successfully presented the case for the government of Lesotho to the Security Council of the United Nations which resulted in an aid package of $US113 million.[1]

Mitchell was a home missionary pastoring the Presbyterian parish of Tuggeranong in the Australian Capital Territory from 1981.[5] [6] Subsequently he pastored the Presbyterian Community Church at Rokeby, Tasmania from 2000 to 2003, as an ordained minister. [7][8][9][10][11] He also acted as procurator for the Tasmanian Assembly of the Church, resigning in August 2000 after serving in that post for well over a decade.[12] Subsequently he acted temporarily in the same capacity for the South Australian Assembly of the Church in 2002,[13] and was the convener of the Tasmanian Theological Education Committee in 2003.[14]

Mitchell was elected a delegate from Tasmania to the 1998 Australian Constitutional Convention as a member of the Australian Monarchist League,.[15] He "felt that he had been enormously privileged to have been a delegate at the convention, where overall there had been a good spirit of cooperation ... [but was] concerned that the push for a republic represents a tearing away from the Scriptural basis of our system of government, going back as far as Magna Carta and the Bill of Rights, which were under-girded by Scripture." He subsequently self-published a paperback booklet, Republic? The Hidden Agenda,[16] and contributed to the booklet, Democracy Down Under - Understanding Our Constitution, published by the Church and Nation Committee of the Presbyterian Church of Victoria.[17]

Mitchell ran as one of two Australian Senate candidates in Tasmania for the Christian Democratic Party in the 2004 federal election. He received 2,270 primary votes and was eliminated after the 95th recount.[18]

Today Mitchell campaigns against recognising local government in the Australian Constitution,[19] and against an Australian Republic.[20]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e UN supports Aid Plan for Lesotho, Sydney Morning Herald, 27 May 1977, p3k&l.
  2. ^ The Tasmanian Bar - Barristers - David Mitchell. Retrieved 24 Nov 2011.
  3. ^ Bechuanaland Colonial Administration c.1884-c.1965 by Place, Date, Name, and Title by Neil Parsons & Glorious Gumbo, History Department, University of Botswana, Gaborone (Botswana) 2002. Retrieved 27 Aug 2013.
  4. ^ A district officer was a judicial appointee responsible to the resident commissioner or resident magistrate, who was, at that time and in that district, David M. Robinson (d.1964).
  5. ^ Eulogy of Rev Peter Clements, Weekly Lively Hope Newsletter, vol. 23(45), Adelaide, 3 May 2009.
  6. ^ Tuggeranong Presbyterian Church - History Retrieved 21 September 2015
  7. ^ Church Directory - Tasmania, The Australian Presbyterian, No. 522, Page 15c, December 2000. Retrieved 27 Aug 2013.
  8. ^ Church Directory - Tasmania, The Australian Presbyterian, No. 524, Page 15c, March 2001. Retrieved 27 Aug 2013.
  9. ^ Church Directory - Tasmania, The Australian Presbyterian, No. 527, Page 15c, June 2001. Retrieved 27 Aug 2013.
  10. ^ Church Directory - Tasmania, The Australian Presbyterian, No. 546, Page 17c, March 2003. Retrieved 27 Aug 2013.
  11. ^ Church Directory - Tasmania, The Australian Presbyterian, No. 555, Page 17c, December 2003. Retrieved 27 Aug 2013.
  12. ^ Tasmanian Assembly, The Australian Presbyterian, No. 518, Page 15b&c, August 2000. Retrieved 27 Aug 2013.
  13. ^ Prayer, The Australian Presbyterian, No. 542, Page 26b, October 2002. Retrieved 27 Aug 2013.
  14. ^ Prayer, The Australian Presbyterian, No. 546, Page 30b, March 2003. Retrieved 27 Aug 2013.
  15. ^ Australian Constitutional Convention (2-13 February 1998) - Delegate List. Retrieved 24 Aug 2013.
  16. ^ Presbyterians at the Constitutional Convention, The Australian Presbyterian, No. 491, Page 17a, March 1998. Retrieved 27 Aug 2013.
    The National Library of Australia have two copies of Republic? The Hidden Agenda by David Mitchell, David Mitchell Hobart (Tas) 1998, and have it catalogued under NL 342.9403 M681.
  17. ^ Democracy Down Under - Understanding Our Constitution - A Review by Bruce Christian, The Australian Presbyterian, No. 497, Page 25b&c, September 1998. Retrieved 27 Aug 2013.
    The Australian National Library do not have a copy of Democracy Down Under - Understanding Our Constitution.
  18. ^ "Final Tasmania Senate Results", Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 24 November 2011.
  19. ^ Why Local Government Should Not Be Recognised in the Constitution by David Mitchell, Quadrant Online, vol.56(4), April 2012. Retrieved 24 Aug 2013.
  20. ^ Republic? More Power For Politicians by David Mitchell, Australians for a Constitutional Monarchy, Hobart (Tas) 1998. Retrieved 24 Aug 2013.