ID 0320

Parliament of New South Wales, Legislative Assembly election

Election of 3 March 1956


Show only vote and seat summary details

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General election for the Legislative Assembly
New South Wales
Date of election (or first day of voting at elections held over more than one day)
3 March 1956

Government in office and parliamentary support before and after the election

Government in office at election

Premier in office at date of election. (check notes to see if change of Premier since previous election)
Premier's party affiliation
Australian Labor Party
Legislative Assembly support for government at election
Majority
If coalition, coalition partner(s)

Government in office after election

Premier in office after election.
Premier's party affiliation
Australian Labor Party
Legislative Assembly support for government after election
Majority
If coalition, coalition partner(s)

Enrolment and voting

Total number of voters on the roll
2,011,258
Number of Assembly seats
94
Number of uncontested seats
8
If uncontested seats, number of voters on the roll in uncontested seats
164,399
Number of voters on the roll in contested seats
1,846,859
Total ballots cast (may differ from number of votes in multiple voting systems)
1,722,628
Turnout (rate of voting in contested seats)
93.27%
Total valid votes
1,693,823
Rate of informal (invalid) voting
1.67%
Informal (invalid) ballots in multiple voting system
Not applicable
Electoral system
Universal franchise at 21 years; single member districts; preferential voting (AV); compulsory preferences; compulsory voting


New South Wales, Legislative Assembly votes and seats won

Display Chart

Election held on 3 March 1956
Criteria for the inclusion of parties in this table are set out in the Glossary under 'listed party'

* to view table drag left or right.
Party Name First preference vote n First preference vote share % Change from previous election % Seats won n Uncontested seats held n Seat share %
Australian Labor Party  810,767  47.87  -7.16  50  53.19 
Liberal Party  594,740  35.11  +7.17  27  28.72 
Country Party  172,020  10.16  15  15.96 
Independents  80,517  4.75  +0.70  2.13 
Communist Party  35,779  2.11  +0.73     
Votes for other than listed parties 0 0.00 0.00       
Totals 1,693,823  100.00    94  100.00 


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* Party did not contest previous election or did not meet criteria for listing, or contested previous election under a different party name.

Notes

Australian Labor Party: The Australian Labor Party suffered major internal divisions in the 1950s which came to a head in 1955 with a split in some state branches of the Party and the creation of the Anti-Communist Labor Party which was to become the Democratic Labor Party. Premier Cahill achieved in New South Wales 'a temporary halt in hostilities or a papering-over of the cracks until after the election', Frost, p. 327 (see 'Reference', below) . For an extensive study of this period, see Robert Murray, The Split: Australian Labor in the Fifties, (Melbourne: Cheshire, 1972), particularly ch. 18.

Communist Party: The Communist Party first fielded candidates at New South Wales Legislative Assembly elections in 1925 and then at most subsequent elections until 1981 but won only a small proportion of the vote. The party has been included in this database for New South Wales because it contested seats at three or more consecutive general elections with more than one candidate; see the Glossary entry for listed party. At the 1956 election it won more than 2 percent of the vote, its highest vote share at New South Wales Assembly elections. For summary information on the role of the Communist Party in New South Wales state politics, consult the indexes of the three volumes of Michael Hogan and David Clune (editors), The People's Choice: Electoral Politics in 20th Century New South Wales (full references to these volumes are given in the 'Reference' section of the notes for the New South Wales Legislative Assembly elections in this database between 1901 and 1999.

Reference: For a comprehensive survey of this election and the preceding period, see Frank Frost, '1956', in Michael Hogan and David Clune (editors), The People's Choice: Electoral Politics in 20th Century New South Wales, vol. 2 (1930 to 1965), pp. 323-354, (Sydney: Parliament of New South Wales and University of Sydney, 2001, ISBN 0909907404).

Sources

Colin A Hughes and B D Graham, A Handbook of Australian Government and Politics 1890-1964, pp. 423-460, (Canberra: Australian National University Press, 1968, SBN 708102700); New South Wales, Parliament, The New South Wales Parliamentary Record: Legislative Council and Legislative Assembly, 1824-1999, vol. VI, pp. 7-15, (Sydney: Parliament of New South Wales, 1999).



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