1943 Western Australian state election

Last updated
1943 Western Australian state election
Flag of Western Australia.svg
  1939 20 November 1943 1947  

All 50 seats in the Western Australian Legislative Assembly
26 Assembly seats were needed for a majority
 First partySecond party
  John Willcock.jpg
Leader John Willcock Arthur Watts
Party Labor Country/National coalition
Leader since20 August 19368 October 1942
Leader's seat Geraldton Katanning
Last election27 seats19 seats
Seats won30 seats17 seats
Seat changeIncrease2.svg3Decrease2.svg2
Percentage43.28%36.70%
SwingIncrease2.svg4.00? (see Results)Decrease2.svg0.72

Premier before election

John Willcock
Labor

Elected Premier

John Willcock
Labor

Elections were held in the state of Western Australia on 20 November 1943 to elect all 50 members to the Legislative Assembly. The Labor Party, led by Premier John Willcock, won a fourth term in office against the Country and Nationalist parties, led by Opposition Leader Arthur Watts and Robert Ross McDonald respectively.

States and territories of Australia first-level subdivision of Australia

The states and territories are the first-level administrative divisions of the Commonwealth of Australia. They are the second level of government in Australia, located between the federal and local government tiers.

Western Australia State in Australia

Western Australia is a state occupying the entire western third of Australia. It is bounded by the Indian Ocean to the north and west, and the Southern Ocean to the south, the Northern Territory to the north-east, and South Australia to the south-east. Western Australia is Australia's largest state, with a total land area of 2,529,875 square kilometres, and the second-largest country subdivision in the world, surpassed only by Russia's Sakha Republic. The state has about 2.6 million inhabitants – around 11 percent of the national total – of whom the vast majority live in the south-west corner, 79 per cent of the population living in the Perth area, leaving the remainder of the state sparsely populated.

Western Australian Legislative Assembly legislature of the State of Western Australia

The Western Australian Legislative Assembly, or lower house, is one of the two chambers of the Parliament of Western Australia, an Australian state. The Parliament sits in Parliament House in the Western Australian capital, Perth.

Contents

The election took place in the midst of World War II, and as such, turnout was considerably down on the previous election. The election was delayed from its intended date of February 1942 by the Legislative Assembly Duration and General Election Postponement Acts (No 51 of 1941, assented 16 January 1942, and No 18 of 1942, assented 9 December 1942) due to the war.

World War II 1939–1945 global war

World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.

In the previous term, two changes of membership occurred at by-elections. George Lambert, the Labor member for Yilgarn-Coolgardie, died on 30 June 1941 and was replaced by former Labor branch secretary Lionel Kelly, running under the "Independent Country" banner. He ultimately joined the Labor Party and became a minister in the Bert Hawke government in the 1950s. In 1943, long-serving and colourful independent Thomas Hughes resigned his seat of East Perth to contest the federal seat of Perth. It was picked up by Labor's Herb Graham. Prior to the election, former Independent Nationalist Arthur Abbott joined the Nationalist Party.

George James Lambert was an Australian politician who was a Labor Party member of the Legislative Assembly of Western Australia from 1916 to 1930 and again from 1933 until his death. He worked as a metallurgist before entering politics.

Yilgarn-Coolgardie was an electoral district of the Legislative Assembly in the Australian state of Western Australia from 1930 to 1950. Located in the Goldfields region, the district was an amalgamation of the former districts of Yilgarn and Coolgardie. Created for the 1930 state election, its first member was Edwin Corboy of the Labor Party, previously the member for Yilgarn. He was succeeded at the 1933 state election by George Lambert, also of the Labor Party, who had been the last member for Coolgardie. Yilgarn-Coolgardie was abolished at the 1950 state election. Incumbent member Lionel Kelly then transferred to the new seat of Merredin-Yilgarn.

Lionel Francis Kelly was an Australian politician who was a member of the Legislative Assembly of Western Australia from 1941 to 1968. He was initially elected as an independent, but in 1946 joined the Labor Party. He served as a minister in the government of Albert Hawke from 1953 to 1959.

Results

Apart from Labor gaining two seats from the Country Party (Avon and Greenough) and one from the Nationalists (Nelson, where Ernest Hoar defeated the incumbent member by just 17 votes), no changes took place at the election. An interesting race in Mount Marshall opened up by the retirement of incumbent Country member Frederick Warner ended with the Country candidate, Hugh Leslie, victorious against the ALP and former minister John Lindsay.

Avon was an electoral district of the Legislative Assembly in the Australian state of Western Australia from 1911 to 2008. The name of the district was changed to Avon Valley in 1950, but reverted to its original name in 1962.

Greenough was an electoral district of the Legislative Assembly in the Australian state of Western Australia from 1890 to 2008.

Nelson was an electoral district of the Legislative Assembly in the Australian state of Western Australia from 1890 to 1950.

Western Australian state election, 20 November 1943
Legislative Assembly
<< 19391947 >>

Enrolled voters212,376 [1]
Votes cast183,781 Turnout 86.54%–5.04%
Informal votes4,548Informal2.47%+0.73%
Summary of votes by party
PartyPrimary votes%SwingSeatsChange
  Labor 77,56743.28% [1] 30+ 3
  Nationalist 43,52924.29%+0.31%7± 0
  Country 22,25112.41%+0.41%10– 2
 Ind. Nationalist [2] 9,1875.13%–1.67%1– 1
 Independent Labor WA7,9094.41%+4.41%0±0
  Communist 7130.40%+0.25%0± 0
  Independent 10,3245.97%–1.68%2± 0
Total179,233  50 
1 274,856 electors were enrolled to vote at the election, but 12 of the 50 seats were uncontested—11 Labor seats (seven more than 1939, including all of the Fremantle seats) representing 57,651 enrolled voters, and one Nationalist seat representing 4,829 voters. The estimated swing from 1939 and 1943 was approximately 4% to Labor.

See also

This is a list of members of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly between the 1939 election and the 1943 election, together known as the 17th Parliament.

This is a list of members of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly between the 1943 election and the 1947 election, together known as the 18th Parliament. In January 1945, the Nationalists, officially known as the National Party of Western Australia, reformed as the Liberal Party under the leadership of Robert McDonald, and all Nationalist MLAs' allegiances changed accordingly.

The Willcock Ministry was the 19th Ministry of the Government of Western Australia, and was led by Labor Premier John Willcock. It succeeded the Second Collier Ministry on 27 August 1936, upon the resignation of Philip Collier as Premier on ill health grounds. It became the longest-serving Labor ministry in Western Australia.

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References