ID 0196

State Government of Victoria beginning 14 September 1943 - period in office of Premier Cain [snr], John ending on 18 September 1943

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

Cain [snr], John
Date of beginning of period in office
14 September 1943
Date of end of period in office
18 September 1943 
Reason for end of preceding period in office
Defeat in parliament 
Reason for end of this government
Defeat in parliament
Number of days in office

Parliamentary support during period

Party affiliation of premier at start of period
Australian Labor 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
VIC 6 December 1952John Gladstone Black McDonaldCountry PartyJohn Cain [snr]Australian Labor Party
VIC 8 November 1947John Cain [snr]Australian Labor PartyThomas Tuke HollwayLiberal Party
VIC 10 November 1945Ian MacfarlanLiberal PartyJohn Cain [snr]Australian Labor Party

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Defeat in parliament (Dunstan): Beginning of Cain (senior)'s first period in office; After the Assembly general election in June 1943, the Australian Labor Party held more seats (22) than any other party, both the United Country Party (18) and the United Australia Party (13) having lost seats, with other seats held by Independents (5) and a breakaway County Party, the Victorian Country Party, (7). 'On 7 September 1943 the Labor Party moved a motion of no-confidence based on the need for electoral redistribution. It was carried 26-24 on 9 September, and Dunstan resigned.' Hughes and Graham, p.128 (see 'Sources', below); Victoria Parliamentary Debates,1943 Session, vol. 215, 7-9 September, pp 512-683 (the vote was taken in the early hours of Friday 10 December).

'Cain [senior] received the support of three Independent members, and a Labor ministry was chosen by exhaustive ballot. The United Australia and Country parties were unable to agree on a coalition, but they outnumbered Government supporters 35 to 26.' Hughes and Graham, p.28 (see 'Sources', below). Cain was commissioned as Premier of an Australian Labor Party minority government on 14 September 1943.

Defeat in parliament (Cain (senior)): 'On 15 September 1943 Cain (senior) sought an adjournment and was defeated 29-24. He sought a dissolution which was refused, and then resigned.' Hughes and Graham, p.129 (see 'Sources', below); Victoria Parliamentary Debates,1943 Session, vol. 215, 15-16 September, pp 685-700. The political context of the creation and defeat of this short-lived ministry is described in Strangio, pp 255-256 (see 'References', below).

References: Kate White provides a political biography of Cain (senior) in, John Cain and Victorian Labor 1917-1957, (Sidney: Hale & Iremonger, 1982, ISBN 0868060275), and the wider divisions within the Labor Party and trade union movement during this period are described in Robert Murray, The Split: Australian Labor in the Fifties (Melbourne: Cheshire, 1972, ISBN 0701516755). For a broad historical study of Labor politics in Victoria, see Paul Strangio, Neither Power nor Glory: 100 Years of Political Labor in Victoria, 1856-1956, (Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 2012, ISBN 9780522861822).

For a study of Cain's periods in office, see Paul Strangio, 'John Cain snr: The Star-crossed Premier', in Strangio and Costar (editors), ch. 20, (see 'Sources', below), and a short survey of Cain's career can be found in Robert Murray and Kate White, 'Cain, John (1882–1957)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 13, (Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 1993), on line here [accessed 21 April 2014].


Colin Hughes and B D Graham (editors), A Handbook of Australian Government and Politics 1890-1964, (Canberra: Australian National University Press, 1968, SBN 708102700); Parliament of Victoria, One Hundred Years of Responsible Government 1856-1956, (Melbourne: Government Printer, 1957, Parliamentary Paper No. 40 of 1956-58); Paul Strangio and Brian Costar (editors), The Victorian Premiers 1856-2006, (Sydney: Federation Press, 2006, ISBN 9781862876019); Raymond Wright, A People's Counsel: A History of the Parliament of Victoria 1856-1990, (Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1992, ISBN 0195533593). Victoria Hansard (Record of Parliamentary Debates) on line here .

In consulting these sources, note the difference between ministries and periods in office.