Election Speeches

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Andrew Fisher – 1910

Labour was in Parliament for the principle of white labour and defence for Australia. In 1903 the Hon. J. C. Watson opposed successfully a proposal to subsidise the home Government for Australian defence. Defence was only effective when the money and the men were found by the country intending to defend itself.

February 10th, 1910

agriculture defence economy federation social security

Ben Chifley – 1951

The Labor Party pledges itself to take every measure necessary to halt the present disastrous inflation. To do that, a programme is required to stabilise the Australian economy.

March 28th, 1951

communism economy health immigration Indigenous affairs industrial relations social security

Bob Hawke – 1990

We in this generation have no greater responsibility than to pass on intact to future generations Australia’s priceless environment.

My Government unequivocally accepts that responsibility.

That’s why we stopped the damming of the Franklin.

And that’s why we protected our irreplaceable rainforests, the tall forests of Tasmania, the Great Barrier Reef and Kakadu.

March 8th, 1990

economy education social security trade environment health water

James Scullin – 1931

The question you must ask yourself is: Will you support those who spent borrowed money extravagantly, encouraged imports, and brought the country to the brink of ruin? Or will you support the Government which by quick, bold and drastic action converted an excess of imports into an excess of exports and stopped the drift in time to prevent a national calamity.

December 1st, 1931

defence economy employment immigration industrial relations

Frank Tudor – 1919

The Government had done nothing to deal with industrial unrest. Immediately Labour was returned to power it would deal with the root of all the trouble by seeing that the people of this country were not exploited by unscrupulous men who made the necessities of life so difficult to obtain.

November 5th, 1919

government administration industrial relations social security economy

Joseph Cook – 1913

There never was a more urgent problem in any country: urgent because of its strategic importance and vulnerability from the point of view of defence, and urgent also from the financial point of view. The two chief requirements are railways and settlers.

April 3rd, 1913

economy infrastructure social security defence government administration immigration industrial relations socialism trade water White Australia policy federation

Robert Menzies – 1961

We offer you good government. The essential quality of good government is that it should have sound and intelligible principles, that it should pursue great national and social objectives with resoluteness, that it should be able to meet the storms that arise from time to time with a proper sense of navigation, that it should have cohesion in its own ranks and a strong sense of mutual loyalty.

November 15th, 1961

economy infrastructure communications and technology communism defence education employment family foreign affairs health immigration Indigenous affairs industrial relations social security socialism trade

James Scullin – 1929

Tonight we open what is probably the most momentous campaign in the history of this country since Federation. For nearly 30 years Australia has been writing history as a nation, and no one will deny that one of the proudest pages in our book of nationhood is that which deals with the building up of our Federal system of arbitration.

September 30th, 1929

economy federation industrial relations

Mark Latham – 2004

And as we look to the future of our children, let’s not forget the greatest intergenerational challenge of them all—saving our planet. Australia must play a role in the international struggle against global warming. Our national icons are at stake: The coral bleaching and destruction of the Great Barrier Reef; The flooding of Kakadu National Park with salt water. No responsible leader could stand by and watch these things happen.

September 29th, 2004

climate change economy education employment environment health social security

Bill Hayden – 1980

One of the tasks of the new Labor Government will be to restore national pride by providing honest, creative and fair administration of the nation’s affairs.

That is our task and that is our challenge–to stop the rot, to arrest the decline, to restore unity and purpose, to raise the standard.

October 1st, 1980

defence economy education employment family foreign affairs health infrastructure social security