ID 0430

Parliament of Tasmania, House of Assembly election

Election of 23 November 1946


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General election for the House of Assembly
Tasmania
Date of election (or first day of voting at elections held over more than one day)
23 November 1946

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
House of 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
House of Assembly support for government after election
Majority
If coalition, coalition partner(s)

Enrolment and voting

Total number of voters on the roll
157,756
Number of Assembly seats
30
Number of uncontested seats
0
If uncontested seats, number of voters on the roll in uncontested seats
Number of voters on the roll in contested seats
157,756
Total ballots cast (may differ from number of votes in multiple voting systems)
143,674
Turnout (rate of voting in contested seats)
91.07%
Total valid votes
129,190
Rate of informal (invalid) voting
10.08%
Informal (invalid) ballots in multiple voting system
Not applicable
Electoral system
Adult franchise at 21 years; multimember districts; proportional representation by the single transferable vote method (STV); compulsory voting


Tasmania, House of Assembly votes and seats won

Display Chart

Election held on 23 November 1946
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  65,843  50.97  -11.63  16  53.33 
Liberal Party  44,243  34.25  12  40.00 
Independents  19,104  14.79  +13.96  6.67 
Votes for other than listed parties 0 0.00 0.00       
Totals 129,190  100.00    30  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

Government in office at election: At the general election held on 13 December 1941, the Cosgrove Labor government had been returned with a record majority of seats and votes, winning 20 of the 30 seats (67 percent) and more than 62 percent of the first preference vote. Cosgrove continued as Premier of an Australian Labor Party majority government.

Government in office after election: After the general election for the House of Assembly on 23 November 1946 (this election), the Cosgrove Australian Labor government was returned but with reduced majorities of both seats and votes; 16 of the 30 seats, and 51 percent of the first preference vote.

Electoral system and voting: The Constitution Amendment Act 1906 '...reduced the number of Assembly districts to five, the boundaries of which were to be identical with the five Commonwealth electoral districts. The Assembly was to number 30 members, with 6 elected from each district', Bennett and Bennett, p.12, (see 'Sources', below). The Electoral Act 1907 introduced proportional representation by the single transferable vote (STV) method to elect all members of the Assembly, a method which became known as the Hare-Clark system. For details of the adoption of STV and references on the operation of the electoral system, see the notes to the 1909 House of Assembly elections.

The Electoral Amendment Act of 1917 provided that '...casual vacancies be filled, not by a fresh poll of the electorate [by-election] but by a re-count [countback] of the ballot papers which elected the vacating member. Candidates at the preceding general election were required to apply to be considered candidates....', Hughes and Graham, 1890-1964, p. 590 (see 'Sources', below). For a brief summary of changes to the electoral system from 1909 to 1994, see Terry Newman, Representation of the Tasmanian People, Expanded edition 1803-1994, Appendix 2 (Hobart: Tasmanian Parliamentary Library, 1994, ISBN 0724642475).

Liberal Party and Nationalist Party (Nationalists): 'The Nationalist organisation was absorbed into the new Liberal Party which was formed in Tasmania in January 1945', Hughes and Graham, p. 606 (see 'Sources', below).

Independents: Changes to the Electoral Act in 1941 meant that Independents could run with another Independent as a 'group' on the ballot paper, or be listed with all other Independent candidates in that electoral district in an 'ungrouped' list; for details of these changes, see the note to the 1941 House of Assembly elections.

The vote shown for Independents in the table above is the vote gained by the combination of both sets of Independent candidates. Eight candidates who ran for election without any stated party affiliation ran as members of groups of Independents and gained 5,414 first preference votes, with one candidate, G H Gray, being elected. In addition, eight 'ungrouped' Independent candidates gained 13,690 first preference votes, with one, R C Townley, being elected.

References: For a description of the style of elections and parliamentary government in this period, see W A Townsley, 'Electoral Systems and Constituencies', and John Reynolds, 'Premiers and Political Leaders', in F C Green (editor), Tasmania: A Century of Responsible Government 1856-1956, (Hobart: L G Shea, Government Printer, [1956]), W A Townsley, Tasmania: Microcosm of the Federation or Vassal State, 1945-1983, particularly pp 26-28 (Hobart: St David's Park Publishing, 1994, ISBN 0724623450), and Richard Davis, Eighty Years' Labor: The ALP in Tasmania, 1903-1983, (Hobart: Sassafras Books and the History Department, University of Tasmania, 1983, ISBN 0859012212).

Sources

Information for this election was taken from 'House of Assembly Election Results, 1909-2006', Tasmanian Parliamentary Library, Tasmanian Parliament website: https://bit.ly/2uvczZ8 ; Scott Bennett and Barbara Bennett, Tasmanian Electoral Handbook, 1851-1982, (Kensington, NSW: Reference Section of History Project Incorporated, University of New South Wales, 1983); Colin A Hughes and B D Graham, A Handbook of Australian Government and Politics 1890-1964, (Canberra: Australian National University Press, 1968, SBN 708102700); and note Report on Parliamentary Elections, (Hobart: Tasmanian Parliamentary Papers, 1947), online at: https://bit.ly/2vYIEcj



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