Adelaide | South Australian Labor figures played key roles in the rise of Gough Whitlam to the prime ministership.
Local political and community figures today joined the mourning, remembering Whitlam’s legacy and the local players who were central to the towering man becoming Australia’s 21st prime minister.
Premier Jay Weatherill paid tribute on Twitter: “It’s hard to imagine Gough is gone – he was my inspiration.”
Deputy Premier John Rau had close connections to Whitlam from a very young age.
Rau’s late uncle Clyde Cameron, a long-time member for Hindmarsh, worked closely with Whitlam to modernise and democratise the Labor Party following the disastrous 1966 federal election.
Sydney | Australia is remembering the life and legacy of former prime minister Gough Whitlam, who died aged 98.
The Australian flag is flying at half-mast over Parliament House and the day’s sitting program has been replaced with condolence motions starting at noon (AEST) with a tribute from Prime Minister Tony Abbott.
“Gough Whitlam was a giant of his time,” Abbott said.
“He united the Australian Labor Party, won two elections and seemed, in so many ways, larger than life.
“In his own party, he inspired a legion of young people to get involved in public life.”
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten told a regular caucus meeting in Canberra the Labor Party had lost a legend.
“Gough Whitlam redefined our country and in doing so he changed the lives of a gen Full Story »
Sydney | Gough Whitlam was prime minister for less than three years.
A giant in stature, intellect and presence, he reformed the Labor Party, led it out of the wilderness and irrevocably changed the Australian political agenda. He had vision before the word became a cliche.
While he remains at the pinnacle of the Labor pantheon, much of what he did has been muddied by the myths and passions surrounding his fall.
Apart from the World War I conscription referendums, his dismissal by Governor-General Sir John Kerr and defeat at the subsequent election in 1975 was the most divisive event in Australian politics.
Edward Gough Whitlam, who died on Tuesday aged 98, was born on July 11 1916.
He had an unusual background for a Labor stalwart of his time.
His father Fred became Commonwealth Crown Sol Full Story »