1913 Australian federal election

The 1913 Australian federal election was held in Australia on 31 May 1913. All 75 seats in the House of Representatives, and 18 of the 36 seats in the Senate were up for election. The incumbent Labor Party, led by Prime Minister Andrew Fisher, was defeated by the opposition Commonwealth Liberal Party under Joseph Cook. The new government had a majority of just a single seat, and held a minority of seats in the Senate.[1] It would last only 15 months, suffering defeat at the 1914 election.

1913 Australian federal election

31 May 1913 (1913-05-31)

All 75 seats in the House of Representatives
38 seats were needed for a majority in the House
18 (of the 36) seats in the Senate
  First party Second party
Leader Joseph Cook Andrew Fisher
Party Commonwealth Liberal Labor
Leader since 20 January 1913 30 October 1907
Leader's seat Parramatta (NSW) Wide Bay (Qld)
Last election 31 seats 42 seats
Seats won 38 seats 37 seats
Seat change 7 5
Popular vote 930,076 921,099
Percentage 48.94% 48.47%
Swing 3.85% 1.50%

Popular vote by state with graphs indicating the number of seats won. As this is an FPTP election, seat totals are not determined by popular vote by state but instead via results in each electorate.

Prime Minister before election

Andrew Fisher

Subsequent Prime Minister

Joseph Cook
Commonwealth Liberal

The 1913 election was held in conjunction with six referendum questions, none of which were carried. According to David Day, Andrew Fisher's biographer, "it was probably the timing of the referenda that was most responsible for the disappointing election result" for the Labor Party.[2]


House of Reps 1913–14 (FPTP) — Turnout 73.49% (Non-CV) — Informal 2.83%
Party Votes % Swing Seats Change
  Liberal 930,076 48.94 +3.85 38 +7
  Labor 921,099 48.47 1.50 37 5
  Independents 49,194 2.59 2.35 0 2
  Total 1,900,369     75
  Liberal WIN 38 +7
  Labor 37 5

  • Three members were elected unopposed – one Liberal and two Labor.
Popular Vote
Parliament Seats


Senate 1913–14 (FPTP BV) — Turnout 73.66% (Non-CV) — Informal N/A
Party Votes % Swing Seats Won Seats Held Change
  Liberal 946,807 49.38 +3.83 7 7 7
  Labor 934,176 48.72 1.58 11 29 +7
  Socialist Labor 20,183 1.05 +1.05 0 0 0
  Independents 16,233 0.85 2.51 0 0 0
  Total 1,917,399     18 36

Seats changing hands

Seat Pre-1913 Swing Post-1913
Party Member Margin Margin Member Party
Ballaarat, Vic   Liberal Alfred Deakin 1.1 3.1 0.6 Charles McGrath Labor  
Bendigo, Vic   Liberal John Quick 1.3 3.6 2.0 John Arthur Labor  
Boothby, SA   Liberal David Gordon 7.1 10.8 3.0 George Dankel Labor  
Calare, NSW   Labor Thomas Brown 3.6 5.9 2.1 Henry Pigott Liberal  
Corangamite, Vic   Labor James Scullin 4.7 6.1 2.2 Chester Manifold Liberal  
Corio, Vic   Labor Alfred Ozanne 4.4 5.1 1.8 William Kendell Liberal  
Fremantle, WA   Liberal William Hedges 4.5 11.4 5.8 Reginald Burchell Labor  
Gippsland, Vic   Independent George Wise 12.1 12.7 5.0 James Bennett Liberal  
Hume, NSW   Independent William Lyne 16.4 16.2 0.7 Robert Patten Liberal  
Indi, Vic   Labor Parker Moloney 3.1 3.2 2.2 Cornelius Ahern Liberal  
New England, NSW   Labor Frank Foster 2.7 9.5 6.5 Percy Abbott Liberal  
Oxley, Qld   Liberal Richard Edwards 12.2 N/A 4.4 James Sharpe Labor  
Riverina, NSW   Labor John Chanter 7.0 8.6 1.0 Franc Falkiner Liberal  
Wannon, Vic   Labor John McDougall 5.0 7.8 4.2 Arthur Rodgers Liberal  
Werriwa, NSW   Labor Benjamin Bennett 0.8 6.5 5.9 Alfred Conroy Liberal  
  • Members in italics did not contest their seat at this election.

Post-election pendulum

Commonwealth Liberal Party
Hume (NSW) Robert Patten LIB 00.7 vs IND
Riverina (NSW) Franc Falkiner LIB 01.0
Corio (Vic) William Kendell LIB 01.8
Calare (NSW) Henry Pigott LIB 02.1
Indi (Vic) Cornelius Ahern LIB 02.2
Corangamite (Vic) Chester Manifold LIB 02.2
Dampier (WA) Henry Gregory LIB 02.6
Perth (WA) James Fowler LIB 03.3
Wakefield (SA) Richard Foster LIB 03.7
Grampians (Vic) Hans Irvine LIB 03.9
Wannon (Vic) Arthur Rodgers LIB 04.2
Lilley (Qld) Jacob Stumm LIB 04.7
Swan (WA) John Forrest LIB 04.9
Gippsland (Vic) James Bennett LIB 05.0 vs IND
Robertson (NSW) William Fleming LIB 05.3
Nepean (NSW) Richard Orchard LIB 05.6
Franklin (Tas) William McWilliams LIB 05.8
Werriwa (NSW) Alfred Conroy LIB 05.9
Fairly safe
New England (NSW) Percy Abbott LIB 06.5
Lang (NSW) Elliot Johnson LIB 07.1
Flinders (Vic) William Irvine LIB 07.8
Eden-Monaro (NSW) Austin Chapman LIB 08.7
Barker (SA) John Livingston LIB 09.0
Darling Downs (Qld) Littleton Groom LIB 10.0
Moreton (Qld) Hugh Sinclair LIB 10.7
Echuca (Vic) Albert Palmer LIB 11.0
Wentworth (NSW) Willie Kelly LIB 11.7
Kooyong (Vic) Robert Best LIB 11.9 vs IND
Parkes (NSW) Bruce Smith LIB 11.9
Wilmot (Tas) Llewellyn Atkinson LIB 12.6
Balaclava (Vic) Agar Wynne LIB 15.0
Henty (Vic) James Boyd LIB 17.1
Parramatta (NSW) Joseph Cook LIB 18.3
North Sydney (NSW) Granville Ryrie LIB 19.1
Richmond (NSW) Walter Massy-Greene LIB 19.9
Very safe
Wimmera (Vic) Sydney Sampson LIB 21.0
Cowper (NSW) John Thomson LIB 22.2
Angas (SA) Paddy Glynn LIB unopposed
Australian Labor Party
Illawarra (NSW) George Burns ALP 00.2
Ballaarat (Vic) Charles McGrath ALP 00.6
Macquarie (NSW) Ernest Carr ALP 01.6
Grey (SA) Alexander Poynton ALP 02.0
Bendigo (Vic) John Arthur ALP 02.0
Darwin (Tas) King O'Malley ALP 02.1
Gwydir (NSW) William Webster ALP 02.2
Bass (Tas) Jens Jensen ALP 02.4
Boothby (SA) George Dankel ALP 03.0
Denison (Tas) William Laird Smith ALP 03.3
Fawkner (Vic) Joseph Hannan ALP 03.3
Oxley (Qld) James Sharpe ALP 04.4
Hunter (NSW) Matthew Charlton ALP 04.5
Wide Bay (Qld) Andrew Fisher ALP 05.6
Fremantle (WA) Reginald Burchell ALP 05.8
Fairly safe
East Sydney (NSW) John West ALP 06.1
Brisbane (Qld) William Finlayson ALP 06.9
Dalley (NSW) Robert Howe ALP 07.7
Herbert (Qld) Fred Bamford ALP 08.0
Cook (NSW) James Catts ALP 09.9
Bourke (Vic) Frank Anstey ALP 10.0
Darling (NSW) William Spence ALP 10.5
Maribyrnong (Vic)) James Fenton ALP 10.8
Capricornia (Qld) William Higgs ALP 14.1
Batman (Vic) Frank Brennan ALP 14.9
Maranoa (Qld) Jim Page ALP 15.0
South Sydney (NSW) Edward Riley ALP 15.0
Adelaide (SA) Ernest Roberts ALP 18.4
Very safe
West Sydney (NSW) Billy Hughes ALP 21.3
Melbourne (Vic) William Maloney ALP 21.9 vs IND
Newcastle (NSW) David Watkins ALP 23.8
Kennedy (Qld) Charles McDonald ALP 24.4
Yarra (Vic) Frank Tudor ALP 25.0
Barrier (NSW) Josiah Thomas ALP 26.8
Melbourne Ports (Vic) James Mathews ALP 29.2
Hindmarsh (SA) William Archibald ALP unopposed
Kalgoorlie (WA) Charles Frazer ALP unopposed

See also


  1. Senate results, 1913 election
  2. David Day (2008). Andrew Fisher: Prime Minister of Australia. Fourth Estate. p. 279.


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