Tasmanian state election, 1931

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Tasmanian state election, 1931

← 1928 9 May 1931 1934 →

All 30 seats to the House of Assembly
  First party Second party
  Sir John McPhee.jpg Albert Ogilvie.jpg
Leader John McPhee Albert Ogilvie
Party Nationalist Labor
Leader since July 1925 October 1929
Leader's seat Denison Franklin
Last election 15 seats 14 seats
Seats won 19 seats 10 seats
Seat change Increase4 Decrease4
Percentage 56.40% 34.92%
Swing Increase14.20 Decrease12.23

Premier before election

John McPhee

Elected Premier

John McPhee

The 1931 Tasmanian state election was held on 9 May 1931 in the Australian state of Tasmania to elect 30 members of the Tasmanian House of Assembly. The election used the Hare-Clark proportional representation system[1] — six members were elected from each of five electorates. For the first time, voting was compulsory, resulting in a high voter turnout.[2]

The Nationalist Party had defeated Labor by one seat at the 1928 election, and John McPhee had been Premier of Tasmania since then. Joseph Lyons left state politics in 1929 to enter federal politics, and was succeeded by Albert Ogilvie as leader of the dispirited Labor Party. The depression had struck Tasmania hard with unemployment nearly 30% and unions impotent.

The Nationalist Party won the 1931 election in a landslide, with 19 seats in the House of Assembly and a margin over Labor of more than 22%, the largest victory over Labor in Tasmania since Hare-Clark elections began in 1909. The win was attributed to public endorsement of McPhee's expenditure cuts over Ogilvie's expansionist policies.[3] It has been said that Ogilvie's error was in identifying with an unpopular federal Labor government.


Tasmanian state election, 9 May 1931
House of Assembly
<< 19281934 >>

Enrolled voters 118,730
Votes cast 112,779 Turnout 94.99% +13.10%
Informal votes 3,885 Informal 3.44% +0.20%
Summary of votes by party
Party Primary votes % Swing Seats Change
  Nationalist 61,414 56.40% +14.20% 19 + 4
  Labor 38,030 34.92% –12.23% 10 – 4
  Independent 9,450 8.68% –2.07% 1 ± 0
Total 108,894     30  

Distribution of Seats

See also


  1. ^ House of Assembly Elections, Parliament of Tasmania.
  2. ^ Report on General Election, 1931, Tasmanian Electoral Commission.
  3. ^ R. P. Davis, McPhee, Sir John Cameron (1878 - 1952), Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 10, Melbourne University Press, 1986, pp 355-356.

External links

  • Assembly Election Results, 1931, Parliament of Tasmania.
  • Report on General Election, 1931, Tasmanian Electoral Commission.
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