ID 0197

State Government of Victoria beginning 18 September 1943 - period in office of Premier Dunstan, Albert Arthur ending on 2 October 1945

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

Dunstan, Albert Arthur
Date of beginning of period in office
18 September 1943
Date of end of period in office
2 October 1945 
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
United Country Party
If coalition government
Coalition partner 1
United Australia Party
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 12 June 1943Albert Arthur DunstanUnited Country PartyAlbert Arthur DunstanUnited Country Party
VIC 16 March 1940Albert Arthur DunstanUnited Country PartyAlbert Arthur DunstanUnited Country Party
VIC 2 October 1937Albert Arthur DunstanUnited Country PartyAlbert Arthur DunstanUnited Country Party
VIC 2 March 1935Stanley Seymour ArgyleUnited Australia PartyAlbert Arthur DunstanUnited Country Party

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Defeat in parliament (Cain): Beginning of Dunstan's second period in office; 'On 15 September 1943 Cain sought an adjournment and was defeated 29-24 [Victoria Parliamentary Debates,1943 Session, vol. 215, 15-16 September, pp 685-700]. He sought a dissolution which was refused, and then resigned.' Hughes and Graham, p.129 (see 'Sources', below). The political context of the creation and defeat of the short-lived Cain ministry is described in Paul Strangio, 'John Cain snr: The Star-crossed Premier', pp 255-256 in Strangio and Costar (editors), ch. 20, (see 'Sources', below). Note also Sol Encel, Cabinet Government in Australia, p.211 (Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 1962).

'Dunstan was commissioned to form a government. A coalition was formed with the [United] Country Party electing its ministers and Hollway selecting an equal number of U A P [United Australia Party] ministers and honorary ministers. Dunstan allocated portfolios.' Hughes and Graham, p.129 (see 'Sources', below). On 18 September 1943, Dunstan became Premier of a United Country Party and United Australia Party coalition government.

Defeat in parliament (Dunstan): 'In March 1945 the United Australia Party changed its name to the Liberal Party. On [29] August a Labor censure motion was defeated 33-29, but two [United] Country Party members voted against the Government [Allnutt and Dodgshun; Victoria Parliamentary Debates,1944-45 Session, vol. 219, 29 August, p.3906] and a third was paired against it. ... On 25 September 1945 a Labor motion to reduce Supply by £1 was carried 29-26 with five Liberal members voting against the government [Cumming, Everard, Harworth, Maltby and Michaelis; Victoria Parliamentary Debates,1944-45 Session, vol. 219, 25 September, p,4325 ].' Hughes and Graham, p.130 (see 'Sources', below).

After more adverse votes and some attempts to reform the ministry, Dunstan was granted a dissolution and then resigned. For more information on the tension between the coalition parties that led to the defeat of the Dunstan ministry, see Brian Costar, 'Tom Hollway: The Bohemian', p.230, in Strangio and Costar (editors), ch. 18, (see 'Sources', below).

References: For a studies of Dunstan's periods in office and his effect on Victorian politics, see Brian Costar, 'Albert Dunstan: The Jumping Jack Premier', in Strangio and Costar (editors), ch. 17, (see 'Sources', below), and John Paul, 'Albert Dunstan and Victorian Government', in Cameron Hazelhurst (editor), Australian Conservatism: Essays in Twentieth Century Political History, pp 169-191 (Canberra: Australian National University Press, 1979). A survey of Dunstan's career can be found in J B Paul, 'Dunstan, Sir Albert Arthur (1882–1950)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 8, (Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 1981), 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.