South Australian state election, 1993
All 47 seats in the South Australian House of Assembly
24 seats were needed for a majority
11 (of the 22) seats in the South Australian Legislative Council
State elections were held in South Australia on 11 December 1993. All 47 seats in the South Australian House of Assembly were up for election. The incumbent Australian Labor Party led by Premier of South Australia Lynn Arnold was defeated by the Liberal Party of Australia led by Leader of the Opposition Dean Brown. The Liberals won what is still the largest majority government in South Australian history.
|Liberal Party of Australia||481,623||52.80||+8.60||37||+15|
|Australian Labor Party||277,038||30.37||-9.72||10||-12|
|Liberal Party of Australia||WIN||61.00||+9.10||37||+14|
|Australian Labor Party||39.00||-9.10||10||-14|
The campaign was dominated by the issue of the collapse of the State Bank of South Australia in 1992. The State Bank's deposits were legally underwritten by the Government of South Australia, putting South Australia into billions of dollars of debt. Labor premier John Bannon had resigned over the issue, being replaced by Lynn Arnold just over a year before the election. Following the leadership change and by early 1993, Newspoll had recorded a total rise of 13 percent in the Labor primary vote. However, the gains did not last. A warning sign of things to come came with the March 1993 federal election, which saw two of Labor's longest-held seats in South Australia, Hindmarsh and Grey, fall to the Liberals. Hindmarsh had been in Labor hands without interruption since 1919, while Grey had been in Labor hands for all but one term since 1943.
The Liberals under Dean Brown went into the election as unbackable favourites, and swept the 11-year Labor government from power in a massive landslide. They won 37 of 47 seats (78.7 percent of the available seats) in the South Australian House of Assembly from a 15-seat swing − in terms of seat count and percentage of seats won, the largest majority government in the state's history. The 15-seat swing is still the largest in South Australian state history. Adelaide, which had been Labor's power base in the state for decades, swung over dramatically to support the Liberals. Labor lost seats in several parts of Adelaide where it had not been seriously threatened in memory, and was cut down to only nine seats in the capital. Additionally, Labor suffered what proved to be permanent swings in much of country South Australia; it was cut down to only one seat outside of Adelaide, the Whyalla-based seat of Giles.
The Liberals won 61 percent of the two-party vote, the largest two-party preferred vote in South Australian state history (dating back to the first statewide two-party calculations from 1944). Labor fell to just 39 percent of the two-party vote from a two-party swing of 9.1 percent—at the time, the largest two-party swing in South Australian state history, and still the largest that resulted in a change of government.
Still, the Liberals were left one short of a majority in the South Australian Legislative Council with the balance of power remaining with the Australian Democrats, who had held sole balance of power since 1985. They would continue to hold the balance of power until after the 1997 election.
The stratospheric records for seat count and percentage of seats in the House led to predictions of a generation of Liberal government. However, the Liberal gains were short lived. Brown's factional rival, John Olsen, successfully challenged Brown for the Liberal leadership in 1996. In turn, the Liberals were reduced to a minority government as a result of the 1997 election, following another record two-party swing in the other direction of 9.5 percent.
|LABOR SEATS (10)|
|Ross Smith||Ralph Clarke||ALP||2.1%|
|Price||Murray De Laine||ALP||11.0%|
Legislative Council results
|1993 Legislative Council result (STV GV)|
|Liberal Party of Australia||51.8%||6|
|Australian Labor Party||27.4%||4|
|1993-1997 Legislative Council|
|Liberal Party of Australia||11|
|Australian Labor Party||9|
- Candidates of the South Australian state election, 1993
- Members of the South Australian House of Assembly, 1993-1997
- Members of the South Australian Legislative Council, 1993-1997
- Results of the South Australian state election, 1993 (House of Assembly)
- Previous election: South Australian state election, 1989
- Next election: South Australian state election, 1997
- 1993 election maps and results: Antony Green ABC archive
- History of South Australian elections 1857-2006, volume 1: ECSA
- "Background leading up to the election/Liberals in power". Crikey. Archived from the original on 2004-10-29.
- Political Parties