Victorian state election, 1935
53 (of the 65) seats in the Victorian Legislative Assembly
At the 1932 state election, the United Australia Party won 31 seats, the United Country Party won 16 seats, and the Australian Labor Party won 14 seats. Sine the election the UAP had lost two seats to the UCP in by-elections: Benambra on 15 October 1932, and Gunbower on 1 May 1934.
At the end of the Parliament, the United Australia Party held 29 seats (down from 31), the United Country Party held 19 seats (up from 16), and the ALP held 14 seats (unchanged).
|Summary of votes by party|
- Twelve seats were uncontested at this election, and were retained by the incumbent parties:
The United Australia Party and the United Country Party had entered the election as a Coalition. The coalition won a comfortable majority, winning a total 44 seats in the 65 seat assembly. UAP leader Sir Stanley Argyle was confirmed as Premier, and formed what was known as the National Ministry, which included three members of the Country Party (Albert Dunstan, John Allan and George Goudie).
On 5 March, rumours began to appear which suggested that the Country Party would demand a greater proportion of the ministry, including the Deputy Premiership, four of the eight full portfolios and at least one Honorary Minister, and it was suggested that they would challenge the UAP on the floor of the Assembly if this was not granted.
On 19 March, a joint conference of the Country Party's central council and the parliamentary party voted in a secret ballot to discontinue the party's association with Argyle's National Ministry, and Dunstan, Allan and Goudie resigned from Argyle's cabinet the next day.
At 10.30pm on Thursday 28 March, after a spirited sixteen-hour debate, Dunstan moved a motion of no confidence against Argyle's government. With the support of the Country Party, the Labor Party and three independents, the motion was carried on division by 40 votes to 23.
Argyle informed the Governor of Victoria, Lord Huntingfield, of his ministry's resignation on 29 March. The Governor sought a meeting with Dunstan, but postponed the decision to commission him as Premier until the following Tuesday (2 April), due to his doubts about Dunstan's ability to form a stable ministry with Labor support. Dunstan was appointed Premier on 2 April 1935 and formed a minority Country Party government with Labor Party support in return for some legislative concessions.
- "BENAMBRA BY ELECTION WON BY U.C.P.". The Horsham Times. Vic.: National Library of Australia. 25 October 1932. p. 4. Retrieved 29 May 2012.
- "GUNBOWER BY-ELECTION.". The Mercury. Hobart, Tas.: National Library of Australia. 17 May 1934. p. 11. Retrieved 29 May 2012.
- "DEFECTION FROM U.A.P.". The Argus. Melbourne: National Library of Australia. 17 May 1933. p. 7. Retrieved 29 May 2012.
- "ELECTION CAMPAIGN NEARS END.". The Argus. Melbourne: National Library of Australia. 27 February 1935. p. 8. Retrieved 29 May 2012.
- Election held on 2 March 1935, Australian Politics and Elections Database (University of Western Australia).
- Colin A Hughes, A Handbook of Australian Government and Politics 1890-1964, Canberra: Australian National University Press, 1968 (ISBN 0708102700).
- "RUMORS REGARDING VICTORIAN CABINET.". Barrier Miner (Broken Hill, NSW : 1888–1954). Broken Hill, NSW: National Library of Australia. 6 March 1935. p. 4. Retrieved 28 May 2012.
- "WITHDRAWAL FROM THE MINISTRY COUNTRY PARTY'S MOMENTOUS DECISION.". The Argus. Melbourne: National Library of Australia. 20 March 1935. p. 7. Retrieved 28 May 2012.
- "ARGYLE MINISTRY DEFEATED RESIGNATION EXPECTED TO-DAY.". The Argus. Melbourne: National Library of Australia. 29 March 1935. p. 7. Retrieved 28 May 2012.
- "New Turn in Victorian Crisis.". The Canberra Times. National Library of Australia. 30 March 1935. p. 1. Retrieved 28 May 2012.