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Earle Page

Earle Christmas Grafton Page (August 8, 1880 - December 20, 1961) was the Prime Minister of Australia from the 7th to the 26th of April 1939. Page at various times held cabinet posts as Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Commerce, and Minister for Health.

Born in Grafton, New South Wales, Australia, he first entered Parliament in 1919 as member for the electoral seat of Cowper with the Farmers and Settlers' Association, but he was a founding member of the Australian Country Party in 1920, and stayed with the Country Party for the remainder of his long parliamentary career. For much of this time the Country Party was the junior party in a coalition government with the United Australia Party and later the Liberal Party of Australia. Earle's brief time as Prime Minister came about because he was Deputy Prime Minister when Joseph Lyons died. As the Country Party was the junior party, the appointment was only temporary, until the United Australia Party could choose a new leader.

By the time of the 1961 election, Page was 81 and suffering from lung cancer and in fact was too sick to campaign for re-election - he had ignored advice from many of his constituents to retire. Page died without knowing that he had been defeated and had lost Cowper, the electoral seat he had held for forty two years.


Previous Australian Prime Minister: Joseph Lyons
Next Australian Prime Minister: Robert Menzies



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