Liberal Party of Australia (Tasmanian Division)

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Liberal Party of Australia
(Tasmanian Division)
AbbreviationLP[1]
LeaderJeremy Rockliff
PresidentRod Scurrah
Deputy LeaderMichael Ferguson
Senior Vice PresidentPeter McKay
TreasurerGeoff Page
Young Liberal PresidentClark Cooley
Women's Council PresidentRochelle Piesse
Founded13 February 1945; 77 years ago (1945-02-13)[2]
HeadquartersSuite 4C, Level 3, 33 Salamanca Place, Hobart TAS 7000
Youth wingYoung Liberals
Women's wingLiberal Women's Council
IdeologyConservatism
Liberalism (Australian)
Liberal conservatism
Political positionCentre-right
National affiliationLiberal Party of Australia
Colors  Blue
SloganSecuring Tasmania’s Future
House of Reps (Tas. seats)
2 / 5
Senate (Tas. seats)
4 / 12
House of Assembly
13 / 25
Legislative Council
4 / 15
Website
tas.liberal.org.au

The Liberal Party of Australia (Tasmanian Division), commonly known as the Tasmanian Liberals, is the state division of the Liberal Party of Australia in Tasmania.[3] The party currently governs in Tasmania. The party is part of the federal Liberal Party of Australia which governs nationally in Coalition with the National Party of Australia.

Parliamentary Party Leader
Inaugural holderNeil Campbell

History[edit]

In 1904, Elliott Lewis established the National League, which changed its name to the Progressive League in 1907. While Lewis became Premier of the state in 1909 under this banner, the League itself shortly disappeared.[4][5] Its successor was the Tasmanian Liberal League, founded later that year in collaboration with the Tasmanian Farmers and Stockowners Association.[6] In 1917, the League affiliated with the Australian Liberal Union.

Following the removal of Billy Hughes from the leadership of the Labor Party, the League merged again to become the Tasmanian National Federation. It shared government with the Labor Party from 1912 to 1923, and then from 1928 to 1934.[7] Despite the establishment of the United Australia Party by Joseph Lyons, the party continued using the name National until 1941 when it changed its name to the 'United Australia and National Organisation'.[8] In 1945 the party came under the umbrella of the new Liberal Party of Australia.

The Tasmanian Division of the party was formed at a meeting in Hobart on 13 February 1945. The first state candidates stood at the 1946 election, most of whom were ex-servicemen. The organisation recruited them by arguing that in the services they had been fighting for freedom, and it was now their duty 'to finish the job'. The party first formed a government in Tasmania 1969.[9]

In 1982, Robin Gray was elected on a platform of commitment to building the Gordon-below-Franklin hydro-electric power scheme. Continual blockades from the Labor Federal Government lead to the Premier threatening to secede from the Commonwealth if any further intervention was taken.[10] Despite the lack of success in the Tasmanian Dam Case, the Gray government won the 1986 state election and held onto power until 1989.[11]

The party was elected at the 1992 state election with Ray Groom as leader, however at the subsequent 1996 election following a promise not to form minority government Groom resigned.[12] Tony Rundle was quick to replace Groom as Liberal leader and reached an informal agreement with the Tasmanian Greens to secure support.

At the 2014 state election, Will Hodgman secured a majority of seats following a 16-year incumbent Labor government led by Lara Giddings. The party was re-elected at the 2018 state election. Hodgman retired from politics in January 2020 and was succeeded by Peter Gutwein as party leader and Premier. On 22 March 2021, lower house MP Sue Hickey announced that she would quit the Liberal Party and sit as an independent, slamming the state Liberals as "unable to accommodate strong women" after being told by Gutwein that she would not be endorsed for the next election. The Liberal government lost its majority and plunged into minority government.[13] The party was re-elected at the May 2021 state election and regained majority government status. In April 2022, Gutwein retired from politics and was succeeded by his deputy Jeremy Rockliff as party leader and Premier.

Organisation[edit]

Each division of the Liberal Party is autonomous, with a unique organisational structure and their own constitutions.[14]

Premiers[edit]

Seven parliamentary Liberal leaders have served as Premier of Tasmania: Angus Bethune (1969–1972), Robin Gray (1982–1989), Ray Groom (1992–1996), Tony Rundle (1996–1998), Will Hodgman (2014–2020), Peter Gutwein (2020–2022) and Jeremy Rockliff (2022–present).

Deputy Premiers[edit]

Seven parliamentary Liberal deputy leaders have served as Deputy Premier of Tasmania: Max Bingham (1982–1984), Geoff Pearsall (1984–1988), Ray Groom (1988–1989), John Beswick (1992–1996), Sue Napier (1996–1998), Jeremy Rockliff (2014–2022) and Michael Ferguson (2022–present).

List of parliamentary leaders[edit]

State election results[edit]

Election Seats won ± Total votes % Position Leader
1946
12 / 30
Steady 44,158 34.25% Opposition Neil Campbell
1948
12 / 30
Steady0 54,010 37.84% Opposition Neil Campbell
1950
14 / 30
Increase2 69,429 47.57% Opposition Rex Townley
1955
15 / 30
Increase1 70,959 45.35% Opposition Rex Townley
1956
15 / 30
Steady0 69,477 43.61% Opposition Tim Jackson
1959
16 / 35
Increase1 66,005 41.05% Opposition Tim Jackson
1964
16 / 35
Steady0 67,971 38.49% Opposition Angus Bethune
1969
17 / 35
Increase1 83,261 43.98% Minority Government Angus Bethune
1972
14 / 35
Decrease3 76,073 38.37% Opposition Angus Bethune
1976
17 / 35
Increase3 104,613 44.5% Opposition Max Bingham
1979
15 / 35
Decrease2 98,845 41.3% Opposition Max Bingham
1982
18 / 35
Increase3 121,346 48.5% Majority Government Robin Gray
1986
18 / 35
Steady0 138,836 54.2% Majority Government Robin Gray
1989
17 / 35
Decrease1 128,143 46.9% Opposition Robin Gray
1992
19 / 35
Increase2 154,337 54.1% Majority Government Ray Groom
1996
16 / 35
Decrease3 121,391 41.2% Minority Government Ray Groom
1998
10 / 25
Decrease6 112,146 38.1% Opposition Tony Rundle
2002
7 / 25
Decrease3 81,185 27.4% Opposition Bob Cheek
2006
7 / 25
Steady0 98,511 31.8% Opposition Rene Hidding
2010
10 / 25
Increase3 124,933 39.0% Opposition Will Hodgman
2014
15 / 25
Increase5 167,051 51.2% Majority Government Will Hodgman
2018
13 / 25
Decrease2 168,303 50.3% Majority Government Will Hodgman
2021
13 / 25
Steady0 166,315 48.7% Majority Government Peter Gutwein

Federal election results[edit]

Election Seats won ± Total TPP votes % Position Leader
2010
0 / 5
Steady0 128,830 39.38% Opposition Tony Abbott
2013
3 / 5
Increase3 161,086 48.77% Government Tony Abbott
2016
0 / 5
Decrease3 143,093 42.64% Government Malcolm Turnbull
2019
2 / 5
Increase2 153,246 44.04% Government Scott Morrison

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Political party name abbreviations & codes, demographic ratings and seat status". Australian Electoral Commission. 18 January 2016.
  2. ^ "Our History". 12 June 2013.
  3. ^ "Current register of political parties". Australian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 19 November 2016.
  4. ^ "Lewis, Sir Neil Elliott (1858-1935)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Melbourne University Press. ISSN 1833-7538. Retrieved 4 February 2019 – via National Centre of Biography, Australian National University.
  5. ^ "The Liberal Party and Its Twentieth Century Precursors". The University of Tasmania. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  6. ^ McRae, J (1961). The Tasmanian Farmers, Stockowners & Orchardists Association.
  7. ^ Bennett, Scott & Bennett, Barbara (1980). Biographical register of the Tasmanian Parliament, 1851–1960 (PDF). ANU Press. ISBN 9780994637413.
  8. ^ White, K (2000). Joseph Lyons. Melbourne.
  9. ^ Weller, P (1971). The organization of early non-Labor parties in Tasmania.
  10. ^ Pink, Kerry (2001). Through Hells Gates: A History of Strahan and Macquarie Harbour. ISBN 0-646-36665-3.
  11. ^ Ward, Airlie: Minority Government, Stateline Tasmania (Australian Broadcasting Corporation), 10 March 2006.
  12. ^ "Ray Groom". Members of the Parliament of Tasmania. Retrieved 24 July 2022.
  13. ^ "Tasmania's Speaker Hickey quits Liberals". Australian Associated Press. Yahoo News Australia. 22 March 2021. Retrieved 24 March 2021.
  14. ^ Tasmanian Liberals. "About". Tasmanian Liberals. Retrieved 4 February 2019.

Further reading[edit]

  • Lucadou-Wells R (1994) 50 year history of the Liberal Party (Tasmanian Division), Hobart, Tasmania.

External links[edit]