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Posts published in “Year: 1974

Whitlam Appears On NBC’s Meet The Press

In the United States, Prime Minister Gough Whitlam appeared on NBC’s Meet the Press program.

Meet the Press began on radio in 1945 and then on television from 1947. Billed as the longest-running program on United States television, it was and is broadcast on Sunday mornings.

The interview was moderated by the program’s host, Lawrence E. Spivak, one of the program’s original interviewers and hosts. Spivak retired as host in 1975, two days before Whitlam’s dismissal, and died in 1994, aged 93.

Whitlam is shown below sitting next to Spivak on the set of Meet the Press.

Meet the Press

The transcript of Whitlam’s appearance is shown below.

Whitlam’s National Broadcast On The Budget And Inflation

In the lead-up to the 1974 Federal Budget, Prime Minister Gough Whitlam made a nationally televised Address to the Nation.

Whitlam explained that the Budget was one month later than normal, due to the May election and the subsequent Joint Sitting of the Parliament.

He was anxious to allay concerns about inflation, which had risen to double digit figures. He claimed that that the war on demand inflation was being won and that the government would “proceed soberly but steadily with the programs which you have twice endorsed”, including childcare.

Whitlam said: “In the fight against inflation, we shall not be using the weapon of mass unemployment in the way that previous governments have sometimes chosen to do.”

Joint Sitting Of Parliament: Whitlam’s Opening Speech

Following the May 1974 double dissolution election, the Senate continued to reject six pieces of legislation. Under Section 57 of the Constitution, a joint sitting was held to resolve the deadlock.

The legislation sought to establish the Medibank universal health insurance scheme which is now known as Medicare. Another bill aimed to establish one-vote-one-value in electoral distributions. Another provided for Senate representation for the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory, whilst the final bill established the Petroleum and Minerals Authority.

This is Whitlam’s opening speech to the Joint Sitting. He specifically deals with the introduction of one-vote-one-value in electoral distributions through establishing a maximum 10% variation in voter numbers in House of Representatives seats.