Election Speeches

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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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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

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John Curtin – 1943

Our country has now withstood the direst trials; it has lived through its darkest hour; it is now confronting the dawn of a victorious and a better day. The Labor Government has done its duty. Australia stands at this election one of the free countries in the world. For that we have toiled and striven. And we know that the time has come when a preserved Australia can once again advance.

July 26th, 1943

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John Curtin – 1940

The country is at war.

The Commonwealth of Australia entered this war, not of any act of itself, but because Germany, pursuing a ruthless policy of aggression, forced war on the British Commonwealth of Nations. The entire guilt lies with Germany.

August 28th, 1940

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Billy Hughes – 1917

This is no time for kid gloves or beating about the bush. It is the time for plain speaking. It is a fight to a finish. It is no time for mealy-mouthed speaking. We must say what we believe in this fight. You must do your duty the same as the men who are fighting your battles, and if you do it half as well we shall win the greatest victory ever known in Australia.

March 27th, 1917

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George Reid – 1906

It took the heart and soul out of our compact of alliance. Even with every Deakinite with us, we had only a bare majority. One defaulter could have ousted us.

October 23rd, 1906

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Malcolm Fraser – 1980

Liberal policies are designed to enable Australians to live free and independent lives in a secure nation. They are policies to promote the enterprise and initiative which will enable people to secure their own future through the rewards of their own efforts. They are also policies of compassion and concern for those in need.

September 30th, 1980

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Joseph Lyons – 1931

I can give you no better advice than to tune in with Britain. Trust the United Australia Party as the British people trusted the United British Party. Turn a deaf ear and a blind eye, as they did, to proposals for financial tricks and devices. Resolve as they did to stick to the old sane ways in Government and in finance.

December 2nd, 1931

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Matthew Charlton – 1925

Australian Labor stands for the establishment and expansion of industry in all its forms. Industry furnishes an ever increasing local market for the consumption of local products. Tariff protection is one of the methods by which national economic expansion can be secured. Labor endorses not only protection at the customs but every method whereby the self-sustaining power of the nation can be extended.

October 9th, 1925

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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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