ID 0501

Parliament of Western Australia, Legislative Assembly election

Election of 8 April 1933


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General election for the Legislative Assembly
Western Australia
Date of election (or first day of voting at elections held over more than one day)
8 April 1933

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
Nationalist Party
Legislative Assembly support for government at election
Coalition
If coalition, coalition partner(s)
Country Party

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
237,195
Number of Assembly seats
50
Number of uncontested seats
9
If uncontested seats, number of voters on the roll in uncontested seats
31,885
Number of voters on the roll in contested seats
205,310
Total ballots cast (may differ from number of votes in multiple voting systems)
186,012
Turnout (rate of voting in contested seats)
90.60%
Total valid votes
181,836
Rate of informal (invalid) voting
2.25%
Informal (invalid) ballots in multiple voting system
Not applicable
Electoral system
Adult franchise at 21 years; single member districts; preferential voting (AV), compulsory preferences


Western Australia, Legislative Assembly votes and seats won

Display Chart

Election held on 8 April 1933
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  81,374  44.75  +6.32  30  60.00 
Nationalist Party (Nationalists)  55,522  30.53  -5.65  16.00 
Country Party  27,381  15.06  -3.71  11  22.00 
Independents  6,419  3.53  +1.50     
Independent Country Party  5,060  2.78  +0.27  2.00 
Independent Nationalists  2,199  1.21     
Social Credit  2,007  1.10     
Independent Labor  1,432  0.79  -1.29     
Communist Party  442  0.24     
Votes for other than listed parties 0 0.00 0.00       
Totals 181,836  100.00    50  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

Premier in office after election: The Mitchell Nationalist Party and Country Party coalition government lost more than 10 percent of its electoral support and seven Assembly seats at this election, including the Premier's seat of Northam; Mitchell became the only Western Australian Premier to lose his seat at a general election for the Legislative Assembly. An Australian Labor Party majority government led by Collier was commissioned on 24 April 1933.

Australian Labor Party: For a study of the Australian Labor Party in Western Australia which includes this period, see Ralph Pervan and Douglas Mitchell, 'The Changing Nature of the Australian Labor Party', in Ralph Pervan and Campbell Sharman (editors), Essays on Western Australian Politics, pp 129-158, (Perth: University of Western Australia Press, 1979, ISBN 0855641495), and note R F Pervan, 'Cabinet and Caucus: Labor in Western Australia, 1933-1947', University Studies in History, [University of Western Australia], 5(1) 1967: 1-37, and 'References', below.

Nationalist Party (Nationalists): The defeat at this election (1933) exacerbated the Nationalists' electoral and organizational problems; see David Black, 'The Liberal Party and its Predecessors', in Ralph Pervan and Campbell Sharman (editors), Essays on Western Australian Politics, pp 191-232, at pp 206-211, (Perth: University of Western Australia Press, 1979, ISBN 0855641495).

In 1931, the federal Parliamentary Labor Party in Canberra split over Depression finance policies, and some members of Labor Party joined with the Nationalist Party to form the United Australia Party under the leadership of Joseph Lyons (see generally, Clem Lloyd, 'The Rise and Fall of the United Australia Party', in J R Nethercote (editor), Liberalism and the Australian Federation pp 113-133, (Sydney: Federation Press, 2001, ISBN 1862874026). The political context of Western Australian politics did not lead to the creation of a WA branch of the the United Australia Party; the Nationalist Party retained its name but cooperated with the federal party at federal elections. As elsewhere in this database, the name Nationalist Party (Nationalists) is used for the Western Australian party even though some references -- and contemporary commentary -- referred to the party in Western Australia as the National Party; the use of the label 'Nationalist' is used to distinguish the party from the National Party which emerged in the 1970s.

Country Party: Organizational changes to the Country Party as a consequence of its major split in 1923 (for details, see the notes for the 1924 Legislative Assembly elections) had strengthened the party even though defeat at this election (1933) had condemned it to the opposition benches; see Lenore Layman, 'The Country Party: Rise and Decline', in Ralph Pervan and Campbell Sharman (editors), Essays on Western Australian Politics, pp 159-190, at pp 164-167 (Perth: University of Western Australia Press, 1979, ISBN 0855641495).

Social Credit: Some voters '... were attracted to single tax theories and the social credit doctrines of Major Douglas', Black, 'The Era of Labor Ascendancy', p. 422 (see 'References', below), and note Baiba Berzins, 'Douglas Credit and the ALP', in Robert Cooksey (editor), The Great Depression in Australia, pp 148-160, (Canberra: Australian Society for the Study of Labour History, [1970], ISBN 0909944008). The votes shown for Social Credit at this election (1933) in the table above were cast for a single candidate, E H White, who contested the seat of Perth North as a 'Single Tax' candidate; see Hughes and Graham. Voting, p. 331, in 'Sources', below.

Western Australian secession: On the same day as this election (1933), a referendum was held proposing Western Australia's secession from the Commonwealth of Australia. The referendum passed with a two to one majority but the incoming government did not support secession. For brief summaries of the secession issue, see Black, 'The Liberal Party ...', pp 204-206 (see reference in 'Nationalist Party', above), and Black, 'The Era of Labor Ascendancy', pp 420-422 (see 'References', below).

For more extensive treatments, see Christopher W Besant, 'Two Nations, Two Destinies: A Reflection on the Significance of the Western Australian Secession Movement to Australia, Canada, and the British Empire', University of Western Australia Law Review, 20 (2) 1990 (special issue): 209-310, E D Watt, 'Secession in Western Australia', University Studies in Western Australian History, [University of Western Australia], 3(2), October 1958: 43-86; for a legalistic interpretation, see Gregory Craven, Secession: The Ultimate States Right, (Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 1986, ISBN 0522843174).

References: For the political context of this election (1933), see David Black, 'The Era of Labor Ascendancy 1924-1947', in C T Stannage (editor), A New History of Western Australia, pp 406-440, (Perth: University of Western Australia Press, 1981, ISBN 0855641819).

For an overview of the context of Western Australian parliamentary and electoral politics in this period, see David Black, 'Factionalism and Stability, 1911-1947', in David Black (editor), The House on the Hill: A History of the Parliament of Western Australia 1832-1990, pp 97-151, (Perth: Western Australian Parliamentary History Project, Parliament of Western Australia, 1991, ISBN 0730939839).

Sources

Colin A Hughes and B D Graham, A Handbook of Australian Government and Politics 1890-1964, (Canberra: Australian National University Press, 1968, SBN 708102700); Colin A Hughes and B D Graham, Voting for the South Australian, Western Australian and Tasmanian Lower Houses 1890-1964, (Canberra: Department of Political Science, Research School of Social Sciences, Australian National University, 1976, ISBN 0708113346); David Black, Election Statistics Legislative Assembly of Western Australia 1890-1996, Listed Alphabetically by Constituency, (Perth: Parliament of Western Australia and Western Australian Electoral Commission, 1997); and David Black. An Index to Parliamentary Candidates in Western Australian Elections State and Federal 1890-2006, 2nd edition, (Perth: Parliament of Western Australia, 2006, ISBN 1920830774).



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