ID 0167

State Government of Tasmania beginning 18 March 1996 - period in office of Premier Rundle, Anthony Maxwell ending on 14 September 1998

Period in office of premier (see Glossary entry for 'period in office' and related terms)

Rundle, Anthony Maxwell
Date of beginning of period in office
18 March 1996
Date of end of period in office
14 September 1998 
Reason for end of preceding period in office
Change of party leader (see note) 
Reason for end of this government
Loss of general election
Number of days in office

Parliamentary support during period

Party affiliation of premier at start of period
Liberal Party
If coalition government
Coalition partner 1
Coalition partner 2
Coalition partner 3
Coalition partner 4
Party support in parliament at beginning of period
If change in parliamentary support during period
If further change during period

Number of ministers at beginning of period (this may vary during the period)

Total number of ministers
Number from party of premier
Number from coalition party 1
Number from coalition party 2
Number from upper house
Number who are women

Assembly elections contested as premier or after which became premier (see Glossary entry for 'after election')

* to view table drag left or right.
Election Premier at election Premier's party Premier after election Premier's party
TAS 29 August 1998Anthony Maxwell RundleLiberal PartyJames Alexander BaconAustralian Labor Party

Previous period in this series for TAS | Next period in this series for TAS


Change of party leader: Beginning of Rundle's period in office: At the general election for the House of Assembly on 24 February 1996, no party won a majority of seats; the Liberal Party won 16 of 35 seats , the Australian Labor Party 14, the Tasmanian Greens 4, together with one Independent (Bruce Goodluck). 'While [Premier] Groom was clearly disappointed in the election outcome, he showed himself prepared to negotiate with the Greens to form a minority government. He said that while minority government would not be easy, the Liberals had an obligation to try and make it work. Three weeks after the election Groom, however, decided that he did not want that responsibility and announced that he would be standing down as Liberal leader and Premier', Stephen Tanner, 'Tasmania', Australian Journal of Politics and History, Australian Political Chronicle, January-June 1996, 44 (3) August 1996: 451-456 at 453. On Groom's resignation, Rundle was elected by the parliamentary party as leader of the Liberals and was commissioned as Premier of a Liberal Party minority government.

Loss of general election: On 13 July 1998 '... Premier Rundle called a snap state election for 29 August 1998. The Government's term of could have extended until May 2000. Clearly disillusioned with the complexities and frustration of minority government, Premier Rundle declared that: "This hung parliament has reached its use-by date. It has done a lot but can do no more" (Mercury, 14 July 1998). ... In a move aimed directly at his minority government supporters, the Greens, the Premier also announced that he would recall parliament on 22 July so that the Labor party parliamentary reform model could be passed. This legislation would cut the number of members in the House of Assembly from 35 to 25 and the Legislative Council from 19 to 15', Tony McCall, 'Tasmania', Australian Journal of Politics and History, Australian Political Chronicle, July-December 1998, 45 (2) June 1998: 292-300 at 292. The legislation was passed with the support of both the Liberal Party and the opposition Australian Labor Party, and brought into effect for the August general election for the House of Assembly at which the Australian Labor Party won 14 of the 25 seats.

References: For Rundle's period in office, note that the Australian Journal of Politics and History has provided brief surveys of Tasmanian politics since 1956 in the 'Political Chronicle' section of the journal in issues of each annual volume. This publication can be viewed online through Wiley-Blackwell Journals at subscribing libraries.

For a brief survey of Rundle's career, see Stephen Tanner, 'Rundle, Anthony Maxwell (Tony) (b 1939)', in Alison Alexander (editor), The Companion to Tasmanian History, p. 318, (Hobart: Centre for Tasmanian Historical Studies, University of Tasmania, 2005, ISBN 186295223X), online at:


'Ministries: Names of the Members of Successive Ministries which have held Office in Tasmania since the inauguration of Responsible Government, together with the Dates of Appointment and Retirement', Journal of House of Assembly, Second Session of the Forty-Fifth Parliament of Tasmania, Anno LIII and LV Eliz II; Session 2 of the 45th Parliament, Volume 251, 2004-2006, (Hobart: Government Printer, Tasmania); Colin A Hughes, A Handbook of Australian Government and Politcs 1985-1999, (Sydney: Federation Press, 2002, ISBN 1862874344), and the website of the Parliament of Tasmania,