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Snedden, McMahon, Whitlam And Gair On The Campaign Trail

The 1972 Federal Election brought to an end 23 years of Liberal-Country Party government that began with Robert Menzies in 1949.

This 22-minute compilation contains radio segments broadcast on the ABC’s “PM” program on November 27, 28 & 29, 1972. [Read more…]

A Political Speech From David Frost

This is a clip of the British entertainer and interviewer, David Frost, satirising political speeches.

I can’t date the recording precisely but it was sometime in 1972, just prior to the Australian federal election that ended 23 years of coalition government. [Read more…]

Prime Minister William McMahon: The First 100 Days

In June of 1971, the Liberal prime minister, William McMahon, celebrated 100 days in office.

McMahon’s tenure followed a period of instability and infighting in the government, which resulted in a challenge by Defence Minister Malcolm Fraser to then prime minister John Gorton. A tied vote in the party-room led to Gorton relinquishing the leader’s position and the election of McMahon, who became prime minister on March 10, 1971.

McMahon entered parliament in 1949. He had served as a minister continuously since July 17, 1951, when Robert Menzies appointed him Minister for the Navy and Minister for the Air Force. He went on to serve in a number of portfolios, culminating in Treasury and Foreign Affairs. To this day, he holds the record for the longest continuous service as a minister and prime minister: 21 years, 4 months, 18 days. [Read more…]

Sir Robert Menzies Announces His Retirement After 16 Years As Prime Minister

Sir Robert Menzies announced his retirement on January 20, 1966, after 16 years as Prime Minister.

Menzies made his announcement to the party-room at 11.21am. Shortly after midday, Harold Holt was elected unopposed as the new leader of the Liberal Party. William McMahon was elected deputy leader.

Menzies saw the Governor-General, Lord Casey, and tendered his resignation, at 4pm. Casey served as a minister under Menzies as Richard Casey between 1939-40 and 1949-60.

At 8pm, Menzies held a press conference in Parliament House. A video extract appears below. [Read more…]