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Archives for April 1974

1974 Federal Election: Liberal Leader Billy Snedden’s Policy Speech

The Leader of the Opposition, Billy Snedden, delivered his 1974 federal election policy speech on behalf of the Liberal Party, in Sydney, on April 30, 1974.

SneddenSnedden was 47 when he gave this speech. He entered parliament in 1955 as the member for the eastern suburban Melbourne electorate of Bruce. Sir Robert Menzies appointed him Attorney-General in 1964. He subsequently became Minister for Immigration and then Minister for Labour and National Service. He became Treasurer when William McMahon became Prime Minister in 1971, and Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party in August 1971 after John Gorton was sacked.

Following the Coalition’s defeat in 1972, Snedden became the Liberal Party’s 5th leader and the nation’s 18th Leader of the Opposition. [Read more…]


Gough Whitlam’s 1974 Election Policy Speech

The Whitlam Labor Government faced the electorate on May 18, 1974, just 18 months after taking office, in a double dissolution election.

Whitlam delivered his policy speech at the Blacktown Civic Centre, calling for a “fair go” for his government and a chance to carry out “the program”.

  • Listen to Whitlam’s Policy Speech
  • Apr 30, 1974: The ABC’s AM program report on Whitlam’s policy speech

Transcript of the Policy Speech delivered by the Prime Minister of Australia, Gough Whitlam, at the Blacktown Civic Centre, NSW, on April 29, 1974.

Men and Women of Australia,

Just 17 months ago, I stood here, and from this place and from this city I asked you to choose for Australia a new team, a new program, a new drive for equality of opportunities. You gave us a clear mandate to go ahead with our program for the next 3 years. For 17 months we have driven ourselves to carry out your mandate, to carry out the program I placed before you. Now the government you elected for 3 years has been interrupted in mid-career. Our program has been brought to a halt in mid-stream. [Read more…]


Sir Paul Hasluck’s 1974 Proclamation Dissolving Parliament

The Twenty-Eighth Parliament was dissolved after only 18 months as a result of the controversy over the appointment of the DLP Senator Vince Gair as Australian Ambassador to Ireland.

The subsequent announcement by the Federal Opposition Leader, Bill Snedden, that the coalition parties would block the goverment’s Supply Bills in the Senate caused Prime Minister Gough Whitlam to respond by calling a double dissolution election for May 18, 1974.

  • Listen to the Governor-General’s Official Secretary, David Smith, read the dissolution proclamation on the steps of Parliament House at noon on April 11, 1974:
  • This page also appears on WhitlamDismissal.com, along with other information on the Whitlam government and the 1975 Dismissal.

PROCLAMATION
By PAUL HASLUCK, the
Governor-General of Australia

WHEREAS by section 57 of the Constitution it is provided that if the House of Representatives passes any proposed law, and the Senate rejects or fails to pass it, or passes it with amendments to which the House of Representatives will not agree, and if after an interval of three months the House of Representatives, in the same or the next session, again passes the proposed law with or without any amendments which have been made, suggested, or agreed to by the Senate and the Senate rejects or fails to pass it, or passes it with amendments to which the House of Representatives will not agree, the Governor-General may dissolve the Senate and the House of Representatives simultaneously: [Read more…]