1993 Australian federal election

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1993 Australian federal election
Flag of Australia (converted).svg
  1990 13 March 1993 (1993-03-13) 1996  

All 147 seats in the House of Representatives
74 seats were needed for a majority in the House
40 (of the 76) seats in the Senate
 First partySecond party
  Second Keating Cabinet 1994 (cropped Keating).jpg John Hewson 2016 01.jpg
Leader Paul Keating John Hewson
Party Labor Liberal/National coalition
Leader since 19 December 1991 (1991-12-19) 3 April 1990 (1990-04-03)
Leader's seat Blaxland (NSW) Wentworth (NSW)
Last election78 seats69 seats
Seats won80 seats65 seats
Seat changeIncrease2.svg2Decrease2.svg4
Popular vote5,436,4215,133,033
Percentage51.44%48.56%
SwingIncrease2.svg1.54%Decrease2.svg1.54%

Australia 1993 federal election.png
Popular vote by state and territory with graphs indicating the number of seats won. As this is an IRV election, seat totals are not determined by popular vote by state or territory but instead via results in each electorate.

Prime Minister before election

Paul Keating
Labor

Subsequent Prime Minister

Paul Keating
Labor

The 1993 Australian federal election was held to determine the members of the 37th Parliament of Australia. It was held on 13 March 1993. All 147 seats of the Australian House of Representatives and 40 seats of the 76-seat Australian Senate were up for election. The incumbent Hawke-Keating Government of the centre-left Australian Labor Party led by Paul Keating, the Prime Minister of Australia, was re-elected to a fifth term, defeating the centre-right Liberal/National Coalition led by Opposition Leader John Hewson of the Liberal Party of Australia, and coalition partner Tim Fischer of the National Party of Australia. This was the first time the Labor party won a fifth consecutive election.

Contents

The Labor Party under Paul Keating prevailed, against general expectations, and even increased its number of seats in parliament. This was the last time the Labor party would win a federal election until 2007.

Background

The Gallagher Index result: 8.46 1993 Election Australia Gallagher Index.png
The Gallagher Index result: 8.46

This was the first election after the end of the late 80s/early 90s recession. The opposition Liberal Party was led by John Hewson, a former professor of economics at the University of New South Wales who succeeded Liberal leader Andrew Peacock in 1990. In November 1991 the Liberal Party launched the 650-page Fightback! policy document − a radical collection of "dry", economic liberal measures including the introduction of a goods and services tax (GST), various changes to Medicare including the abolition of bulk billing for non-concession holders, the introduction of a nine-month limit on unemployment benefits, various changes to industrial relations including the abolition of industrial award, a $13 billion personal income tax cut directed at middle and upper income earners, $10 billion in government spending cuts, the abolition of state payroll taxes and the privatisation of a large number of government-owned enterprises. All of this presented a vision of a very different future direction to the Keynesian economic conservatism practiced by previous Liberal/National Coalition governments. The 15 percent GST was the centrepiece of the policy document.

Through 1992, Labor Prime Minister Paul Keating mounted a campaign against the Fightback package, and particularly against the GST. Keating described the GST as an attack on the working class in that it shifted the tax burden from direct taxation of the wealthy to indirect taxation as a broad-based consumption tax. Pressure group activity and public opinion critical of the GST was relentless leading Hewson to exempt food from the proposed GST. However the exclusions announced by Hewson led to questions surrounding the complexity of what precisely which food items would and would not be exempt from the GST. Hewson's difficulty in explaining this to the electorate was exemplified in the infamous birthday cake interview, considered by some as a turning point in the election campaign. Keating won a record fifth consecutive Labor term and a record 13 years in government at the 1993 election, a level of political success not previously seen by federal Labor. A number of the proposals were later adopted in to law in some form, to a small extent during the Keating Labor government, and to a larger extent during the John Howard Liberal government (most famously the GST), while unemployment benefits and bulk billing were re-targeted for a time by the Tony Abbott Liberal government.

The election-eve Newspoll reported the Liberal/National Coalition on a 50.5 percent two-party-preferred vote, with Paul Keating's personal ratings being significantly negative. [1]

For the first time since the 1966 election, an incumbent government had increased their two-party-preferred vote.

There was an unusual circumstance in the division of Dickson. One of the candidates, an independent, died very shortly before the election, making it necessary to hold a supplementary election on 17 April. Following the return of the Labor Party to government, Keating announced the makeup of the Second Keating Ministry to be sworn in on 24 March, but kept the portfolio of Attorney-General of Australia open for Michael Lavarch subject to him winning Dickson on 17 April. He won the seat, and was appointed to the ministry on 27 April.

Aftermath and Assessment

Keating had run promising a tax cut, but he failed to deliver that promise and was defeated three years later in the 1996 Australian federal election by the Liberal/National Coalition led by John Howard. [2] John Howard would go on to become Australia's second-longest serving Prime Minister.

Speaking in 2019, Hewson was quoted as saying, "In 1993 and 2004, the governments of the day took away the wrong lesson...It was 'we’re invincible!' But the real lesson was 'actually, the people wanted to vote for the opposition, but the opposition scared them off'." [2]

Results

House of Representatives results

Government (80)
Labor (80)

Opposition (65)
Coalition
Liberal (49)
National (16)

Crossbench (2)
Independent (2) Australian House of Representatives elected members, 1993.svg
Government (80)
     Labor (80)

Opposition (65)
Coalition
     Liberal (49)
     National (16)

Crossbench (2)
     Independent (2)
    House of Reps (IRV) – 1993–36 – Turnout 95.75% (CV) — Informal 2.97%
    PartyVotes%SwingSeatsChange
      Labor 4,751,39044.92+5.4980+2
      Liberal–National coalition 4,681,82244.27+0.8165–4
      Liberal  3,888,57936.77+2.0149–6
      National  758,0367.17–1.2516+2
      Country Liberal  35,2070.33+0.0500
      Democrats 397,0603.75–7.5100
      Greens*193,4021.83+0.4600
      Natural Law 78,5770.74+0.7400
      Confederate Action 60,2130.57+0.5700
      Call to Australia 49,4670.47–0.5000
      Independent EFF 9,9540.09+0.0900
      Rex Connor Labor 7,0830.07–0.0100
      Citizens Electoral Council 4,1980.04+0.0400
      Indigenous Peoples 4,0690.04+0.0400
      Against Further Immigration 3,5870.03+0.0300
      Grey Power 1,7590.02–0.1900
      Abolish Self Government 1,6630.02+0.0200
      Independents 332,5353.14+0.382+1
     Total10,576,779  147–1
    Two-party-preferred vote
      Labor WIN51.44+1.5480+2
      Liberal–National coalition  48.56–1.5465–4
    Popular Vote
    Labor
    44.92%
    Liberal
    37.10%
    National
    7.17%
    Democrats
    3.75%
    Greens
    1.86%
    Independents
    3.10%
    Other
    2.10%
    Two Party Preferred Vote
    Labor
    51.44%
    Coalition
    48.56%
    Parliament Seats
    Labor
    54.42%
    Coalition
    44.22%
    Independents
    1.36%

    Senate results

    Government (30)
Labor (30)

Opposition (36)
Coalition
Liberal (29)
National (6)
CLP (1)

Crossbench (10)
Democrats (7)
Greens (2)
Independent (1) Australian Senate elected members, 1993.svg
    Government (30)
         Labor (30)

    Opposition (36)
    Coalition
         Liberal (29)
         National (6)
         CLP (1)

    Crossbench (10)
         Democrats (7)
         Greens (2)
         Independent (1)
      Senate (STV GV) — 1993–96 – Turnout 96.22% (CV) — Informal 2.55%
      PartyVotes%SwingSeats
      Won
      Seats
      Held
      Change
        Labor 4,643,87143.50+5.091730–2
        Liberal–National coalition 4,595,14843.05+1.131936+2
       Liberal–National joint ticket2,605,15724.40–0.076N/AN/A
        Liberal 1,664,20415.59+1.0311290
        National 290,3822.72+0.1216+2
        Country Liberal 35,4050.33+0.04110
        Democrats 566,9445.31–7.3227–1
        Greens [lower-alpha 1] 314,8452.95+0.8512+1
        Call to Australia 108,9381.02–0.35000
        Shooters 63,6910.60+0.60000
        Confederate Action 59,8750.56+0.56000
        Against Further Immigration 46,4640.44+0.24000
        Democratic Labor 38,3170.36+0.21000
        Natural Law 38,0540.36+0.36000
        Pensioner and CIR 22,2090.21+0.03000
        Grey Power 17,5950.16–0.11000
        Republican 15,1870.14+0.14000
        Indigenous Peoples 6,4220.06+0.06000
        Independent EFF 6,0310.06–0.58000
        Citizens Electoral Council 5,5780.05–0.02000
        Tasmania 2,8150.03+0.03000
        Abolish Self-Government 1,7080.02+0.02000
        Independent 184,8041.73+1.43110
       Total10,674,805  4076

      Notes
      1. Several state Green parties had not yet affiliated to the national Australian Greens party (founded in 1992). This total includes 214,117 for the federal Australian Greens, 53,757 votes for the Greens Western Australia, and 46,971 votes for the Green Alliance (in New South Wales).

      Seats changing hands

      SeatPre-1993SwingPost-1993
      PartyMemberMarginMarginMemberParty
      Adelaide, SA  Labor Bob Catley 3.73.01.3 Trish Worth Liberal 
      Bass, Tas  Liberal Warwick Smith 4.34.50.0 Silvia Smith Labor 
      Corinella, Vic  Liberal Russell Broadbent 0.74.43.7 Alan Griffin Labor 
      Cowan, WA  Labor Carolyn Jakobsen 0.91.80.9 Richard Evans Liberal 
      Dunkley, Vic  Liberal Frank Ford 1.21.60.6 Bob Chynoweth Labor 
      Franklin, Tas  Liberal Bruce Goodluck 2.19.57.4 Harry Quick Labor 
      Gilmore, NSW  National John Sharp 4.41.10.5 Peter Knott Labor 
      Grey, SA  Labor Lloyd O'Neil 6.54.32.1 Barry Wakelin Liberal 
      Hindmarsh, SA  Labor John Scott 5.32.81.6 Chris Gallus Liberal 
      Hinkler, Qld  Labor Brian Courtice 4.04.20.2 Paul Neville National 
      Kennedy, Qld  Labor Rob Hulls 1.44.82.6 Bob Katter National 
      Lowe, NSW  Liberal Bob Woods 0.64.55.0 Mary Easson Labor 
      Lyons, Tas  Liberal Max Burr 2.15.63.8 Dick Adams Labor 
      Macquarie, NSW  Liberal Alasdair Webster 3.62.20.1 Maggie Deahm Labor 
      McEwen, Vic  Liberal Fran Bailey 3.23.90.7 Peter Cleeland Labor 
      McMillan, Vic  Liberal John Riggall 4.44.80.4 Barry Cunningham Labor 
      Paterson, NSW  Liberalnotional – new seat0.13.43.1 Bob Horne Labor 
      Stirling, WA  Labor Ron Edwards 0.11.71.5 Eoin Cameron Liberal 

      See also

      Notes

      1. "Newspoll archive since 1987". Polling.newspoll.com.au.tmp.anchor.net.au. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 30 July 2016.
      2. 1 2 Crabb, Annabel (25 May 2019). "Surprise win held a warning for PM. And the first sign of trouble is already here". ABC News. Retrieved 25 May 2019.

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