Sir Rupert Hamer, Premier of Victoria from 1972 until 1981, died at his home in Melbourne on March 23, 2004.
A major condolence debate took place in the Victorian Legislative Assembly this week.
Extraordinarily, only one member of the House of Representatives, Petro Georgiou, the member for Kooyong, rose to pay tribute to one of the great Liberal figures of the past half-century.
In the Senate, an Australian Democrat, Lyn Allison, moved a condolence motion that was passed without debate.
It is difficult to imagine the Howard government adopting such a stance if the deceased Premier had been a right-winger of the ilk of Henry Bolte. This theme was explored by Alan Ramsey of the Sydney Morning Herald.