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1996 Federal Election Count – 27 Years Ago

Last updated on December 2, 2023

Twenty-seven years ago tonight, the fifth change of government since World War II took place. This page contains full video of the 1996 federal election night count.

The election saw the Labor government of Paul Keating defeated by the Liberal-Nationals coalition led by John Howard.

The election brought to an end 13 years of Labor government that began under prime minister Bob Hawke in 1983. The Hawke-Keating governments won 5 elections, in 1983, 1984, 1987, 1990 and 1993. It remains the longest-serving Labor government since Federation.

The Howard government went on to win four elections, in 1996, 1998, 2001 and 2004, before losing office to the ALP and Kevin Rudd in 2007.

It was an unprecedented quarter-century of stability, beaten only by the 23 years of coalition rule under Menzies, Holt, Gorton and McMahon from 1949 until 1972.

The current Prime Minister, Anthony Albanese, celebrates his 60th birthday today. It is also the 27th anniversary of his election to the NSW electorate of Grayndler on March 2, 1996 at age 33.

The three videos on this page contain 6 hours and 39 minutes of the ABC’s entire election night coverage. The telecast began at 6pm.

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Malcolm Farnsworth
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