Prime Ministers And Living Ex-Prime Ministers

This table shows how many former prime ministers were alive during the terms of subsequent prime ministers.

The record was created on two occasions in the 1940s, when eight former prime ministers were alive.

The first occasion was in Oct-Nov 1941, during the first five weeks of John Curtin’s prime ministership. Fadden, Menzies, Page, Scullin, Bruce, Hughes, Cook and Watson were still living. Five of the ex-leaders remained in parliament at that time, including Menzies, who would return as PM in 1949.

The second occasion was the period between July 1945 and July 1947, the first two years of Ben Chifley’s prime ministership. Forde, Fadden, Menzies, Page, Scullin, Bruce, Hughes and Cook were still living. For most of this period, six of the ex-leaders were still in parliament.

Three prime ministers (Lyons, Curtin and Holt) have died in office. Two former prime ministers (Chifley and Hughes) were still in parliament when they died.

Currently, all six former prime ministers since March 1983 are still living: Hawke, Keating, Howard, Rudd, Gillard and Abbott. Only Abbott remains in the parliament.

The table shows the dates and names of every living ex-prime minister during the term of every incumbent PM. A name in bold indicates that the former PM was still in parliament. A date indicates when the PM left parliament.

Incumbent and Living Ex-Prime Ministers
FROM TO INCUMBENT PM Ex-PMs NAMES OF LIVING EX-PMs
(BOLD = still in Parliament)
(dates = left Parliament)
CHANGE
01.01.1901
24.09.1903
Edmund Barton
First prime minister
24.09.1903
27.04.1904
Alfred Deakin
1
Barton (16/12/03) 24.09.1903: Deakin replaced Barton
27.04.1904
18.08.1904
Chris Watson
2
Deakin, Barton 27.04.1904: Watson replaced Deakin
18.08.1904
05.07.1905
George Reid
3
Watson, Deakin, Barton 18.08.04: Reid replaced Watson
05.07.1905
13.11.1908
Alfred Deakin
3
Reid, Watson, Barton 05.07.1905: Deakin replaced Reid
13.11.1908
02.06.1909
Andrew Fisher
4
Reid, Watson, Deakin, Barton 13.11.1908: Fisher replaced Deakin
02.06.1909
29.04.1910
Alfred Deakin
4
Fisher, Reid (13/04/10), Watson (13/04/10), Barton 02.06.1909: Deakin replaced Fisher
29.04.1910
24.06.1913
Andrew Fisher
4
Reid, Watson, Deakin (31/05/13), Barton 13.04.1910: Fisher won election
24.06.1913
17.09.1914
Joseph Cook
5
Fisher, Reid, Watson, Deakin, Barton 31.05.1913: Cook won election
17.09.1914
27.10.1915
Andrew Fisher
5
Cook, Reid, Watson, Deakin, Barton 05.09.1914: Fisher won election
27.10.1915
12.09.1918
W.M. Hughes
6
Fisher (11/12/15), Cook, Reid, Watson, Deakin, Barton 27.10.1915: Fisher resigned
12.09.1918
07.10.1919
W.M. Hughes
5
Fisher, Cook, Watson, Deakin, Barton 12.09.1918: Reid died
07.10.1919
07.01.1920
W.M. Hughes
4
Fisher, Cook, Watson, Barton 07.10.1919: Deakin died
07.01.1920
09.02.1923
W.M. Hughes
3
Fisher, Cook (10/12/21), Watson 07.01.1920: Barton died
09.02.1923
22.10.1928
Stanley Bruce
4
Hughes, Fisher, Cook, Watson 09.02.1923: Bruce replaced Hughes
22.10.1928
22.10.1929
Stanley Bruce
3
Hughes, Cook, Watson 22.10.1928: Fisher died
22.10.1929
06.01.1932
James Scullin
4
Bruce, Hughes, Cook, Watson 12.10.1929: Scullin won election
06.01.1932
07.04.1939
Joseph Lyons
5
Scullin, Bruce (11/11/33), Hughes, Cook, Watson 19.12.1931: Lyons won election
07.04.1939
26.04.1939
Earle Page
5
Scullin, Bruce, Hughes, Cook, Watson 07.04.1939: Lyons died
26.04.1939
29.08.1941
Robert Menzies
6
Page, Scullin, Bruce, Hughes, Cook, Watson 26.04.1939: Menzies elected UAP leader
29.08.1941
07.10.1941
Arthur Fadden
7
Menzies, Page, Scullin, Bruce, Hughes, Cook, Watson 29.08.1941: Fadden replaced Menzies
07.10.1941
18.11.1941
John Curtin
8
Fadden, Menzies, Page, Scullin, Bruce, Hughes, Cook, Watson 07.10.1941: Curtin replaced Fadden
18.11.1941
05.07.1945
John Curtin
7
Fadden, Menzies, Page, Scullin, Bruce, Hughes, Cook 18.11.1941: Watson died
06.07.1945
13.07.1945
Frank Forde
7
Fadden, Menzies, Page, Scullin, Bruce, Hughes, Cook 05.07.1945: Curtin died
13.07.1945
30.07.1947
Ben Chifley
8
Forde (28/09/46), Fadden, Menzies, Page, Scullin, Bruce, Hughes, Cook 13.07.1945: Chifley elected ALP leader
30.07.1947
19.12.1949
Ben Chifley
7
Forde, Fadden, Menzies, Page, Scullin (10/12/49), Bruce, Hughes 30.07.1947: Cook died
19.12.1949
13.06.1951
Robert Menzies
7
Chifley, Forde, Fadden, Page, Scullin, Bruce, Hughes 10.12.1949: Menzies won election
13.06.1951
28.10.1952
Robert Menzies
6
Forde, Fadden, Page, Scullin, Bruce, Hughes 13.06.1951: Chifley died
28.10.1952
28.01.1953
Robert Menzies
5
Forde, Fadden, Page, Scullin, Bruce 28.10.1952: Hughes died
28.01.1953
20.12.1961
Robert Menzies
4
Forde, Fadden (22/11/58), Page (09/12/61), Bruce 28.01.1953: Scullin died
20.12.1961
26.01.1966
Robert Menzies
3
Forde, Fadden, Bruce 20.12.1961: Page died
26.01.1966
25.08.1967
Harold Holt
4
Menzies (16/02/66), Forde, Fadden, Bruce 26.01.1966: Menzies retired
25.08.1967
19.12.1967
Harold Holt
3
Menzies, Forde, Fadden 25.08.1967: Bruce died
19.12.1967
10.01.1968
John McEwen
3
Menzies, Forde, Fadden 17.12.1967: Holt died
10.01.1968
10.03.1971
John Gorton
4
McEwen, Menzies, Forde, Fadden 10.01.1968: Gorton elected Liberal leader
10.03.1971
05.12.1972
William McMahon
5
Gorton, McEwen (20/03/71), Menzies, Forde, Fadden 10.03.1971: McMahon overthrew Gorton
05.12.1972
21.04.1973
Gough Whitlam
6
McMahon, Gorton, McEwen, Menzies, Forde, Fadden 02.12.1972: Whitlam won election
21.04.1973
11.11.1975
Gough Whitlam
5
McMahon, Gorton (11/11/75), McEwen, Menzies, Forde 21.04.1973: Fadden died
11.11.1975
15.05.1978
Malcolm Fraser
6
Whitlam, McMahon, Gorton, McEwen, Menzies, Forde 11.11.1975: Fraser replaced Whitlam
15.05.1978
20.11.1980
Malcolm Fraser
5
Whitlam (31/07/78), McMahon, Gorton, McEwen, Forde 15.05.1978: Menzies died
20.11.1980
28.01.1983
Malcolm Fraser
4
Whitlam, McMahon (13/03/82), Gorton, Forde 20.11.1980: John McEwen died
28.01.1983
11.03.1983
Malcolm Fraser
3
Whitlam, McMahon, Gorton 28.01.1983: Forde died
11.03.1983
31.03.1988
Bob Hawke
4
Fraser (07/05/83), Whitlam, McMahon, Gorton 05.03.1983: Hawke won election
31.03.1988
20.12.1991
Bob Hawke
3
Fraser, Whitlam, Gorton 31.03.1988: McMahon died
20.12.1991
11.03.1996
Paul Keating
4
Hawke (20/02/92), Fraser, Whitlam, Gorton 19.12.1991: Keating overthrew Hawke
11.03.1996
19.05.2002
John Howard
5
Keating (23/04/96), Hawke, Fraser, Whitlam, Gorton 02.03.1996: Howard won election
19.05.2002
03.12.2007
John Howard
4
Keating, Hawke, Fraser, Whitlam 19.05.2002: Gorton died
03.12.2007
24.06.2010
Kevin Rudd
5
Howard (24/11/07), Keating, Hawke, Fraser, Whitlam 24.11.2007: Rudd won election
24.06.2010
27.06.2013
Julia Gillard
6
Rudd, Howard, Keating, Hawke, Fraser, Whitlam 24.06.2010: Gillard overthrew Rudd
27.06.2013
18.09.2013
Kevin Rudd
6
Gillard (05/08/13), Howard, Keating, Hawke, Fraser, Whitlam 26.06.2013: Rudd overthrew Gillard
18.09.2013
21.10.2014
Tony Abbott
7
Rudd (22/11/13), Gillard, Howard, Keating, Hawke, Fraser, Whitlam 07.09.2013: Abbott won election
21.10.2014
20.03.2015
Tony Abbott
6
Rudd, Gillard, Howard, Keating, Hawke, Fraser 21.10.2014: Whitlam died
20.03.2015
15.09.2015
Tony Abbott
5
Rudd, Gillard, Howard, Keating, Hawke 20.03.2015: Fraser died
15.09.2015
Malcolm Turnbull
6
Abbott, Rudd, Gillard, Howard, Keating, Hawke 14.09.2015: Turnbull overthrew Abbott

 

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