Sunday, September 08, 2013

Minister Without Portfolio

For our final look at the make-up of the first Australian cabinet, and the ministers who have carried on the tradition to the present day, we strike the oddest category - members who do not hold a portfolio but are still ministers.

I think the rationale for the first Barton ministry to do this was to reward those actively involved in the federation endeavour, or state leaders who required some sort of representation in the first federal parliament.

There were two:

  1. Neil Lewis: 1st January to 23rd April 1901, was never elected to Parliament (!)
  2. Sir Philip Fysh: 26th April 1901 to 10th August 1903 (he became Postmaster-General a month later)
both were premiers of Tasmania and I'm sure there's a story behind that too.


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