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Victoria: State Of The Parties 1996-2002

This table shows the state of the parties in the Victorian parliament between 1996 and 2002.

The Kennett-led Coalition government won its second term in 1996. In 1999, Steve Bracks became Premier of a minority Labor government. In 2002, Bracks won the largest majority in the history of the Victorian parliament.

Victorian Parliament
Party Leg
Assembly
1996
Leg
Council
1996
Leg
Assembly
1999
Leg
Council
1999
Leg
Assembly
2002
Leg
Council
2002
ALP
29
10
42 43 44
14
62
25
Liberal
48
28
36 35
24
17
15
National
9
6
7 6
6
7
4
Independent
2
3
2
Total
88
44
88
44
88
44
Current: Majority Labor Government, first elected 1999
Premier: Steve Bracks

 


Victorian Election 1999 – Scott Bennett & Gerard Newman

This is a research paper on the 1999 Victorian state election.

The paper is by Scott Bennett, of the Politics and Public Administration Group, and Gerard Newman, of the Statistics Group, part of the Information and Research Services of the Department of the Parliamentary Library. [Read more…]


McNamara Announces Retirement; Perilous By-Election In Benalla

Pat McNamara, former Victorian National Party leaderThe Victorian coalition parties face a perilous by-election in Benalla in the new year following the decision of Pat McNamara to retire from Parliament.

McNamara resigned today as leader of the National Party and was replaced by Peter Ryan. Ryan was elected unanimously. The MLA for Swan Hill, Barry Steggall, is his new deputy.

The expected by-election follows last weekend’s 10% swing to the ALP which delivered the Bracks government Burwood, the seat of former Premier Jeff Kennett.

McNamara won Benalla last September in a two-candidate contest, securing 57.41% of the vote.

There are 46 polling booths in Benalla, many of them small in numbers. Last September, McNamara won all but 3 – Eildon, Jamieson and Wandiligong – and these were won only narrowly by the ALP candidate, Denise Allen.

By contrast, at the 1996 election, McNamara secured 58.86% of the primary vote against 4 other candidates, including independent Bill Hill who has announced he will contest the forthcoming by-election. Hill won 15.36% of the primary vote in 1996.

Given the strong showing for independents in other rural seats in this year’s election, the National Party has good cause to be concerned about its capacity to retain Benalla, but Labor and independent candidates will have no illusions about their prospects in this traditional conservative electorate.


Victorian Liberals Plot To Remove Poggioli and Howley

Victorian Liberals stunned by yesterday’s loss of the blue-ribbon seat of Burwood are planning a move against State Director Peter Poggioli and Party President Joy Howley.

A source close to the party hierarchy at 104 Exhibition Street has told VCEpolitics.com that senior Liberals are furious over the result of the September 18 election, the Frankston East by-election, and now the Burwood by-election.

A senior member of the Liberal Party’s private polling team has already been dispatched to work for South Australian Premier, John Olsen, in an attempt to find a scapegoat for the recent poor performance of the party machine.

Many senior Liberals are appalled at the choice of Lana McLean over Helen Kroger in the Burwood preselection. Prominent senior Liberals such as former State President Ted Bailleau backed the ex-wife of former state president Michael Kroger, but McLean was a surprise winner at the preselection convention. McLean’s campaign never got off the ground due to a series of allegations about her personal affairs.


A.L.P. Wins Burwood By-Election With 10% Swing

8.30pmIn one last final nail in the coffin of the Kennett era, the Labor Party’s Bob Stensholt has won the former Premier’s seat of Burwood in today’s by-election.

Bob Stensholt, ALP Member for BurwoodWith counting proceeding, the ALP appears to have secured around 55% of the two-party-preferred vote, and has won 10 of the 13 booths in the electorate.

Jeff Kennett held the seat for the Liberals continuously since its formation in 1976. Following his defeat in the September 18 State election, Kennett resigned from the seat on the day the new Parliament was opened.

The result is an important boost to the ALP, giving it 43 seats to 42 for the Opposition. Whilst the government still needs to rely on the support of at least 2 of the 3 independents, the extra seat will make management of the Legislative Assembly slightly easier, as well as giving the government the absolute majority of 45 votes that it needs to pass constitutional change.

The result partly illustrates the “honeymoon” period being experienced by the Premier, Steve Bracks, but is also a disaster for new Liberal leader, Denis Napthine.

The Liberal candidate, Lana McLean, was dogged by controversy throughout the campaign. After winning preselection against the party machine’s preferred candidate, Helen Kroger, Mrs. McLean was accused in Parliament of making a false statutory declaration in a dispute with a neighbour over a driveway. It was revealed she had also lobbied the then Planning Minister, Rob Maclellan. Later, there were revelations about a dispute with the Commonwealth Bank and reports that she had been ejected from an underage sporting event for using the “f word”, presumably “fuck”, to an umpire.

The Labor candidate, Bob Stensholt, a Monash University academic, was also under attack for spelling mistakes in his election literature: “tought” for “taught”, “elecion” for “election”, etc. He was also accused of hiding his time spent training for the priesthood in the 1970s.


ALP Candidate For Burwood By-Election Distributes Video Throughout Electorate

The ALP candidate for the Burwood by-election in Victoria, Bob Stensholt, distributed a 5-minute videotape to the electorate, as part of his campaign.

Stensholt ran as the ALP candidate at the general election, but was defeated by the Liberal Party leader and Premier, Jeff Kennett, who has held the seat since 1976.

The by-election was caused by Kennett’s resignation from Burwood following his defeat in the election. Burwood is a traditionally Liberal-voting area that falls predominantly within the federal electorate of Kooyong. [Read more…]


Five Candidates To Contest Burwood By-Election

Five candidates have nominated for the Burwood by-election caused by the resignation of the former Premier, Jeff Kennett.

The Labor candidate, Bob Stensholt, has drawn the top position on the ballot paper, followed by the Liberals’ Lana McLean.

The Greens have nominated Philip Crohn, the Democratic Labor Party has nominated perennial candidate Dr. Peter Ferweda, and Stephen Mayne is running as an independent.

Mayne continues to operate a web site called Jeffed.com, styling it as “real news”.


Liberals Reject Kroger In Burwood

Liberal PartyThe Liberal Party has chosen Lana McLean as its candidate for the Burwood by-election on December 11, rejecting the public front-runner, Helen Kroger.

It is reported today that McLean performed better at the preselection convention last night than Kroger. Liberal Party preselection conventions are made up of 60% branch delegates (local party members in Burwood) and 40% Victoria-wide delegates.

McLean’s victory is a blow to the Liberal establishment which supported Kroger. McLean was the Liberal candidate for Melbourne in the September 18 election, where she polled 36.24% of the two-party-preferred vote, a swing of 2.15% over the 1996 result.

Jeff Kennett won Burwood on September 18 with 56.79% of the two-party vote. This represented a swing of 1.79% to the ALP.

A victory for the ALP would help it maintain its tenuous grip on government, but Burwood has always been a Liberal seat and will be hard for the new government to win.

Nominations for the by-election close on Monday 22 November.


McNamara To Resign As Victorian National Party Leader

Outgoing National Party leader, Pat McNamaraPolitical change arising out of the September 18 election continues in Victoria with the announcement by National Party leader, Pat McNamara, that he is to relinquish the position he has held for the past 11 years.

McNamara, describing himself as one of the “dinosaurs”, will resign the leadership next month. He is expected to be replaced by the deputy leader and member for Gippsland South, Peter Ryan. McNamara made no announcement about if or when he will resign from parliament.

McNamara was elected as the member for Benalla in 1982, the election that brought the Cain Labor government to power. He became leader of the party following the retirement of long-time leader, Peter Ross-Edwards, in 1988. Prior to the 1992 election, McNamara struck a coalition deal that saw him become Deputy Premier following the defeat of the Kirner government.

The National Party’s role in the coalition government was the first time in over 50 years that the rural party had held ministerial office. Ironically, the Liberal Party had the numbers to govern in its own right throughout its 7 years in office under Jeff Kennett.

The elevation of Peter Ryan to the National Party leadership will come at a crucial period in the party’s history. The party holds only 7 seats in the Legislative Assembly, losing 2 at the recent election, one to the Liberals (Warrnambool) and one to an independent (Gippsland East). The party is battling challenges from independent candidates around the country. The ALP now holds more rural and provincial seats than the Nationals.

Ryan was born on 30 October 1950 in Bendigo. Prior to entering Parliament in 1992, he was a partner in the law firm Warren, Graham and Murphy in Sale.


Victorian Parliament Opened; Andrianopoulos New Speaker; Kennett Resigns

The Victorian Parliament opened today with the election of the Labor member for Mill Park, Alex Andrianopoulos, as Speaker.

Contrary to speculation, the National Party did not field a candidate for the position. With the provision of a Speaker, and the support of the 3 independents, the minority Labor government has a 44-43 margin in the lower house. An absolute majority of 45 votes is needed for constitutional changes.

The new Speaker, Mr. Andrianopoulos, has been a member of parliament for 14 years. He was first elected to the Legislative Assembly seat of St. Albans in 1985. Following the abolition of the seat in the 1991 redistribution, he won the seat of Mill Park. The new Speaker was born in Tripolis in 1955, migrating to Australia in 1965.

Former Premier, Jeff Kennett, has resigned from Parliament. His resignation letter was read to the Legislative assembly chamber by the Speaker shortly after 5pm today. Earlier, Kennett had written to his Burwood constituents advising them of his intention to resign from Parliament. He said he wants to spend more time with his family. Few observers are surprised that the former Premier does not want to face the new Labor government across the Assembly chamber. A by-election in Burwood will be held before Christmas.

The new Victorian parliament was officially opened by the Governor, Sir James Gobbo, this afternoon. The Bracks government faced its first Question Time at 10.25pm today.