Election Speeches

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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

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John Howard – 2001

National security is therefore about a proper response to terrorism. It’s also about having a far sighted, strong, well thought out defence policy. It is also about having an uncompromising view about the fundamental right of this country to protect its borders. It’s about this nation saying to the world we are a generous open hearted people taking more refugees on a per capita basis than any nation except Canada, we have a proud record of welcoming people from 140 different nations.

But we will decide who comes to this country and the circumstances in which they come.

October 28th, 2001

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James Scullin – 1934

It was persistently suggested at the last elections that, while the Labor Government was in office, bankers and financiers would not release money for enterprise, and that, with the removal of the Labor Government, millions would flow into industry and employment and prosperity would appear. Thousands of poor people, sorely tried by poverty, voted against their lifetime convictions, but they have had a sad awakening. I am confident that, on this occasion, they will assert their rights as men and women, and, by their votes, will transfer their power to a Labor Government with majorities in both Houses of Parliament. That power, in Labor’s hands, will be used with firmness and with justice. Democracy shall rule Australia, not a financial oligarchy.

August 15th, 1934

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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

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James Scullin – 1928

The outstanding problems to be faced and to be honestly and firmly grappled with in the next Parliament are those directly associated with public finance, the development of Australian industries, and the employment of our people. With no desire to paint a gloomy picture, it is my duty to direct attention to our position, and to utter the warning that, notwithstanding Australia’s great natural resources and wonderfully recuperative powers, the present drift cannot be allowed to continue without fateful consequences.

November 17th, 1928

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Tony Abbott – 2010

As a liberal, I support lower taxes, smaller government and greater freedom. As a conservative, I support a fair go for families and respect for values which have stood the test of time. As an Australian, I support policies which work and which don’t trifle with our country’s future. Mine is a genial pragmatic political creed based above all on respect for the people and the communities that have produced here perhaps the most free, fair and prosperous society on earth.

August 8th, 2010

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John Curtin – 1937

The real decision which the people of Australia are called upon to make at this election is one of values. The Labor Party declares that the immediate task of statesmanship is to overcome the forces which are undermining the moral, social and economic foundations of civilisation.

It affirms that the level of social well-being is the crucial test of economic policy and that peace is an idle dream without social justice between nations and between individuals.

September 20th, 1937

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Ben Chifley – 1946

Australia is about to enter upon the greatest era in her history, this country of ours has come through two world wars and weathered the miseries and hardships of a depression, all in the space of a little over 30 years. Today Australia has become the great bastion of the British-speaking race south of the Equator. Strategically arid economically, our country has assumed a position in the Pacific on behalf of the British Commonwealth of Nations of such importance that development and responsibility go hand in hand.

September 2nd, 1946

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Billy Hughes – 1919

But what of the future? The burning blasts of war have shrivelled, blackened, and destroyed the world we once knew. Old landmarks have disappeared. The nations of the earth panting from the struggle, impoversihed by the unprecedented destruction of wealth, are confronted with a new set of financial, national, and industrial circumstances. Humanity has indulged in a terrible orgy of destruction; it must pay the price. We must enter on a long period of reconstruction—wherein captial will be scarce, interest high, wages and materials costly.

October 30th, 1919

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Herbert Evatt – 1954

We believe in the utilisation of the powers of government to achieve and maintain the full employment of our people and maximum standards of health and physical efficiency, to abolish poverty, to clear slums and unhealthy environments, to prevent exploitation by monopolist concentration of property, to stabilise the economy on a basis of social justice and to ensure freedom from want.

May 6th, 1954

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