Scholes in 1983
|16th Speaker of the Australian House of Representatives|
27 February 1975 – 16 February 1976
|Preceded by||Jim Cope|
|Succeeded by||Sir Billy Snedden|
|Member of the Australian Parliament|
22 July 1967 – 8 February 1993
|Preceded by||Hubert Opperman|
|Succeeded by||Gavan O'Connor|
Gordon Glen Denton Scholes
7 June 1931
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
|Died||9 December 2018 (aged 87)|
|Spouse(s)||Della K. Robinson|
Gordon Glen Denton Scholes AO (7 June 1931 – 9 December 2018) was an Australian politician who served in the House of Representatives from 1967 to 1993, representing the Labor Party. He was Speaker of the House of Representatives from 1975 to 1976, and then a minister in the Hawke Government from 1983 to 1987.
Scholes was born in Melbourne, the son of Thomas Glen Denton Scholes and his wife Mary Louisa O'Brien. He was the Victorian Amateur Heavyweight Boxing Champion in 1949. He joined the Australian Labor Party in 1955 and was President of the Geelong ALP Branch from 1962 to 1964. He was President of the Geelong Trades Hall Council from 1965 to 1966, and a councillor of the Geelong City Council from 1965 to 1967.
Scholes was the Labor Party candidate in the Division of Corio, centred on Geelong, in the 1966 election, and was defeated by incumbent Liberal Sir Hubert Opperman. However, Opperman resigned a few months after the election to become Australia's first High Commissioner to Malta. Scholes won the seat at the ensuing by-election on a swing of 11 percent. He won the seat in his own right at the 1969 election.
Speaker of the House
Scholes served as Speaker from 27 February 1975 until 16 February 1976, a period taken up almost entirely by the 1975 Australian constitutional crisis. On 11 November 1975, following the dismissal of the Prime Minister, Gough Whitlam, by the Governor-General, Sir John Kerr, and the appointment by Kerr of the Leader of the Opposition, Malcolm Fraser, as caretaker Prime Minister, the House of Representatives passed a motion of no confidence in the Fraser government, by 10 votes. The no confidence motion also called on the Governor-General to reinstate the Whitlam government. As Speaker, Scholes was charged with conveying that resolution of the House to the Governor-General and to request Kerr to dismiss Fraser and re-appoint Whitlam. Ker refused to see the Speaker or to recognise the motion of no confidence in the Fraser government by the House of Representatives, keeping Scholes waiting for more than an hour. By the time the Governor-General agreed to see Scholes, Kerr had already dissolved the Parliament on Fraser’s advice, which was something Fraser had undertaken to do once he had secured passage of the Supply bills through the Senate. Scholes later accused Kerr of bad faith for making an appointment to receive the Speaker shortly after 3pm, and then not waiting to hear from him before dissolving Parliament more than an hour later, with the appointed Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser still as Prime Minister, without the confidence of the House of Representatives.
Personal life and death
He was an honorary member of the Geelong Philatelic Society .
Gordon Scholes died on 9 December 2018, aged 87. A State Funeral was held on 18 December.
- Jenny Hocking The Dismissal Dossier: Everything You Were Never Meant to Know About November 1975 MUP 2017
- "Biography for Scholes, the Hon. Gordon Glen Denton, AO". ParlInfo Web. Parliament of Australia. Archived from the original on 3 August 2008. Retrieved 24 August 2007.
- Tucker's Funerals. Retrieved 14 December 2018
| Australian Minister for Defence
| Australian Minister for Territories
|Parliament of Australia|
| Member for Corio
| Speaker of the Australian House of Representatives