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Former Member of Parliament Details

  Mr Francis Walsh

PERSONAL DETAILS

Full Name Francis Henry Walsh
Date of Birth 06 Jul 1897
Public ActivitiesBorn in 1897 at O'Halloran Hill, Frank Walsh trained and practised as a stonemason as a young man. He became involved in the union movement and in 1941 was elected to the House of Assembly as the Labor member for Goodwood. Walsh remained in Parliament through out the extended rule of the Playford administration, taking over as leader of the Labor Opposition from M.R. O'Halloran in 1960. Under his leadership the Labor Party won the March 1965 election and formed the first Labor Government since 1933. The new Government was seen by many South Australians as a breath of fresh air after such a long period of conservative rule. Important legislation passed during Walsh's Premiership included the Social Welfare Act and the Aboriginal Lands Trust Act. The Walsh Government also increased spending in areas such as education. The government's program, however, was regularly frustrated by a conservative Upper House. Much of the reformist energy of this period was seen as coming from Don Dunstan who held the important ministerial portfolios of Attorney-General, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs, and Minister of Social Welfare. Indeed, many within the Party felt that Dunstan would make a better leader in the run up to the 1968 election than the ageing Walsh. Widespread dissatisfaction with Walsh's leadership and fears that his political skills were insufficient to match those of the newly elected (and much younger) Liberal Opposition leader Steele Hall, saw Walsh reluctantly resign in mid-1967. Dunstan was elected leader of the Labor Party and Premier and despite a good campaign narrowly lost the 1968 election to the Liberal Party. Walsh died the same year.
Deceased18 May 1968

ELECTORAL HISTORY

DateHouseDistrictPartyReason
29 Mar 1941 - 02 Mar 1956House of AssemblyGoodwoodAustralian Labor PartyBoundary Redistribution
03 Mar 1956 - 01 Mar 1968House of AssemblyEdwardstownAustralian Labor PartyNot Re-elected

PARLIAMENTARY APPOINTMENTS

Ministerial Appointment

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10 Mar 1965 - 01 Jun 1967Minister of Immigration
10 Mar 1965 - 01 Jun 1967Premier
10 Mar 1965 - 01 Jun 1967Treasurer
18 Mar 1965 - 01 Jun 1967Minister of Housing
01 Jun 1967 - 26 Mar 1968Minister of Social Welfare
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