jack lang - gough whitlam


a webquest for individual Stage 5 students on
What is democracy?
What sort of democracy do we have in modern Australia?

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Jack Lang, Premier of New South Wales, was dismissed by the Governor of New South Wales in 1932 because, according to the National Archives, he defied the Commonwealth Government's financial agreements legislation when he argued for the suspension of loan payments to overseas creditors and his government defaulted on their interest payments to the Commonwealth.

Gough Whitlam, Prime Minister of Australia, was dismissed by the Governor General of Australia in 1975 because, according to the Governor General and the Shadow Attorney General of the time, his failure to obtain supply was an expression of a loss of confidence in the Government and should have resulted in the Government's resignation. When he did not resign he was dismissed and elections were called.

These two men had been elected to their respective Parliaments by the people of their electorates. They had each been appointed to their position in the Parliament by agreement of their party (being the dominant party in each Parliament at that time, the parties chose their leaders who then took these senior positions).

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This webquest has been developed by Jan Brady, The Hills Grammar School, on behalf of the Discovering Democracy program of the Commonwealth Department of Education, under the auspices of the Quality Teaching Project, No. 3. Dreamweaver MX 2004 was used for its construction.

© 2004 Jan Brady