PM Transcripts

Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 783


Photo of Menzies, Robert

Menzies, Robert

Period of Service: 19/12/1949 to 26/01/1966

More information about Menzies, Robert on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 13/08/1963

Release Type: Media Release

Transcript ID: 783

63/ 082
FOR PRESS: P. M. No0 .6126
Statement by the Prime Ministetr1 the Rt. Hon. Sir Robert
Menzie s
It is true that I have been having some
discussions over recent timeswoith my colleague, Mr. McEwen,
over electoral matters. But these have been essentially
explora tory. On redistribution, for example, we have both
been trying to work out what the area of difference may
be so that we may have some ideas to present to Cabinet,
which will then decide the course to follow.
So far as individual electorates are concerned,
all I need say is that in the Liberal Party and, I imagine,
in the Country Party, a decision as to whether or not to
contest a particular seat is a matter for the organisations
and not for the Parliamentary leaders. Though it is true
that over the years we have not infrequently proffered our
opinions and our advice, the final decisions are not ours
to make. Of course we behave, as sensible men, in a
composite government. At the next election we want an
overall victory for the Government, which means the minimum
of electoral friction between the parties. Sometimes threecornered
contests are useful; sometimes they are unavoidable.
Sometimes they are damaging. Mr. McEwen and I, as usual,
would like in the common cause, to confine the areas of
conflict. But we both recognise that ultimately the
decision to contest any electorate is made by our political
organisations. We therefore have no authority to make a
pact, and have not made one.
I h, 7ve consulted Mr. McEwen before issuing this
statement. He completely agrees with it.
CANBERRA, 13th August, 1963.

Transcript 783