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Lance Barnard

Australian politician

Died when: 78 years 97 days (939 months)
Star Sign: Taurus


Lance Barnard

Lance Herbert Barnard AO (1 May 1919 – 6 August 1997) was an Australian politician and diplomat.He was the deputy leader of the Australian Labor Party (ALP) from 1967 to 1974 and held senior ministerial office in the Whitlam Government, most notably as Deputy Prime Minister of Australia from 1972 to 1974.

Barnard was born in Launceston, Tasmania, into a prominent political family; his father Claude Barnard was also a federal government minister.

He was a timber worker, soldier and schoolteacher before entering politics himself.He was elected to the House of Representatives at the 1954 federal election, winning the seat of Bass that his father had lost five years earlier.

Barnard was elected deputy to Gough Whitlam in 1967 and became deputy prime minister following the ALP's victory at the 1972 election.

After an initial "duumvirate" in which he and Whitlam both held multiple portfolios, Barnard was appointed Minister for Defence.He subsequently oversaw the merger of several smaller departments into the Department of Defence.

In 1974, Barnard lost the deputy leadership to Jim Cairns but remained in the defence portfolio.He resigned from parliament in 1975 to become ambassador to Norway, Finland and Sweden, triggering a by-election that resulted in the loss of his seat to the Liberal Party.

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