Peter Beattie Announces Resignation As Queensland Premier

The Queensland Premier, Peter Beattie, has announced that he will retire later this week.

Beattie has been Labor Premier since June 1998, winning re-election in 2001, 2004 and 2006. He will retire as the second longest-serving Labor Premier of Queensland. William Forgan Smith served for 10 years from 1932 until 1942.

  • Listen to Beattie’s Resignation Press Conference (23m – part only):

This is the text of Peter Beattie’s resignation statement.

Peter Beattie, outgoing Labor Premier of QueenslandI indicated in late June that I would be considering my future over the next 12 months. Well I’ve done that. And it’s now time; it’s time for renewal.

And therefore I’ve indicated to my cabinet colleagues, and my caucus colleagues and my workmates that I’ll be resigning as premier as of 10am Thursday. There will be a special caucus meeting on Wednesday at 11am to elect a new leader. [Read more…]


Rann Now Longest-Serving Premier

Peter Beattie’s resignation as Queensland Premier will elevate South Australia’s Mike Rann to the position of longest-serving state premier. Rann was elected in March 2002.

Mike Rann, Premier of South AustraliaThe Northern Territory Chief Minister, Clare Martin, will become the longest-serving state or territory head of government, having been elected in August 2001. She just eclipses the ACT’s Jon Stanhope, elected in November 2001.

The retirements of Bob Carr (elected 1995), Steve Bracks (1999) and Beattie (1998) have resulted in the Labor governments which dominate the Australian states and territories moving to a second-generation of leaders.

Western Australian Premier Geoff Gallop (elected February 2001) resigned due to ill-health in January 2006. Tasmanian Premier Jim Bacon (elected September 1998) also resigned due to ill-health in February 2004.

Rann remains the last-elected and only original member of the clutch of Labor Premiers elected between 1995 and 2002.

John Howard remains the longest-serving head of government, having been Prime Minister since March 11, 1996.


Peter Beattie To Step Down On Thursday

2.45pm – The Queensland Premier, Peter Beattie, has announced that he will step down on Thursday.

Peter Beattie, outgoing Labor Premier of QueenslandAt a press conference in Brisbane, Beattie said he looked forward to the election of Queensland’s first female Premier, Anna Bligh.

Beattie said it was “time for renewal”.

He will leave office as Queensland’s second longest-serving Labor Premier.

Beattie was first elected in 1998, as leader of a minority government.

He won handsome re-elections in 2001 and 2004.

Statement issued by Premier Peter Beattie.

“I have given a great deal of thought to Queensland’s future since my speech to the Party Conference in June and those considerations were taken into account at last Monday’s Strategic Cabinet Meeting.

“The Government has a strategy for the future and now we need new leadership to take Queensland forward. [Read more…]


Beattie Calls Queensland Election For September 9

Queensland Premier Peter Beattie has called an election for September 9.

The announcement was made at a press conference in Brisbane at 11am today. The election is being held six months early and follows the premature ill-health retirement by the member for Townsville, Nita Cunningham. [Read more…]


Beattie On Media Power Without Responsibility: Who Guards The Guardians?

The Australian media needs to be more accountable and responsible, according to the Premier of Queensland, Peter Beattie.

Delivering the A. N. Smith Memorial Lecture in Journalism at the University of Melbourne, Beattie used his speech to call for newspapers to appoint ombudsmen.

He also attacked the reporting of a number of stories about his government by Queensland newspapers.

Text of the A. N. Smith Memorial Lecture in Journalism, delivered by the Premier of Queensland, Peter Beattie.

Power Without Responsibility: Who Guards the Guardians?

Peter BeattieI am honoured to have been invited to give the AN Smith Memorial lecture in journalism.

Looking back over previous speakers, I see that I am joining a distinguished band of people who have addressed important issues involving journalism and that there has been good balance between members of the fourth estate and those on whom they report.

I pay tribute to AN Smith who died 70 years ago, to his family whose wish it was that these lectures should take place on an annual basis, and to the University of Melbourne for ensuring that the lectures retain a meaningful and respected focus for everyone interested in the role of the media.

When I received my invitation, it came with a reminder of a debate about media responsibility and accountability that I endeavoured to start in March 2003 and with a suggestion that this was a subject that could be further addressed in this lecture.

Let me remind you of what I said in 2003 and the reaction to my comments. [Read more…]


Beattie: Howard Is The Past, Latham Is The Future

This is the text of the speech given by Queensland Premier Peter Beattie at the ALP’s Official Campaign Launch for the federal election.

  • Listen to Beattie’s speech (7m)

Transcript of Peter Beattie’s speech at the ALP campaign launch.

BeattieWelcome to Queensland.

This election is about Australia’s future.

And it’s very plain.

John Howard is the past.

Mark Latham is the future. [Read more…]


A Brief History of the Beattie Labor Government

The Beattie Labor Government was elected in 1998, following a period of turmoil in Queensland politics.

Queensland Premier Peter BeattieThe long-term National Party Government, first elected in 1957 and which governed under Premier Joh Bjelke-Petersen from 1968 to 1987, was defeated at the State election on 2 December 1989. Led by Wayne Goss, the Labor government was comfortably re-elected in 1992.

At the 1995 elections, Goss’s majority was reduced to one seat. Following the overturning of the result in the electorate of Mundingburra, the Liberal Party won the ensuing by-election and the Independent member for Gladstone, Liz Cunningham, pledged her support to the Coalition. A National-Liberal government led by Rob Borbidge took office in February 1996.

At the 1998 State election, Pauline Hanson’s One Nation Party captured nearly 23% of the total primary vote and won 11 seats. The ALP lost 5 seats to One Nation, but also picked up 5 seats from the Liberal Party in Brisbane. The Liberals were apparently punished by city voters for their reluctance to put One Nation last on Liberal tickets. [Read more…]