Alternate History

Malcolm Turnbull (Referendum to Republic)

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The Honourable Malcolm Turnbull


1st President of the Republic of Australia
In office13 December 2000 – 8th December 2008
Prime Minister John Howard
Preceded by None, Title created
Succeeded by Kim Beazley
Minister of Environment
Assumed office19th January 2009
Preceded by Ian Campbell
Personal details
Born 24 October 1954 (age 57)


Political party Liberal Party of Australia
Spouse(s) Lucy Turnbull née Hughes
Children 2
Alma mater University of Sydney

University of Oxford

Religion Roman Catholic

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Malcolm Bligh Turnbull (born 24 October 1954) is an Australian politician. He is a member of the Liberal Party of Australia and is currently the minister of Environment. He was also the first Australian President, following the 1999 republican referendum, in which Australia became a Republic.

In the 2000 Australian Presidential election, Turnbull as a the leader of the republican movement, became the liberal candidate for the party, beating the Labour candidate, Kim Beazley.

Life Until Presidency

Malcolm Bligh Turnbull was born on the 24 of October 1954 to parents Bruce Turnbull and Coral Lansbury. He would eventually go to private schools throughout the Sydney region. Turnbull graduated from Sydney University with degrees in art and law and would go onto become secretary of the Australian Consolidated Press holdings group.

He also established an investment banking firm in 1987, Nicholas Turnbull & Co Ltd, alongside the son of the former Labour Prime Minister Gough Whitlam. In 1991 he, alongside the novelist Thomas Keneally, founded the Australian Republican Movement, and with Keneally's retirement in 1993, Turnbull became Chairman of the movement. As his support grew, he became known on the radar by the Prime Minister John Howard. Howard called the Constitutional Convention of 1998, in which the republicans set out plans for a referendum for Australians to decide if the wish for a republic. The referendum was held on the 6th of November the following year, with 700,000 votes gaining the upper hand on the anti-republicans.

With this he set up a small group of ministers throughout the rest of the year, and on 1 January 2000, Turnbull stood up in front of a 50,000 crowd Audience and declared the Republic of Australia. He quickly became involved in the liberal party, and in the 2000 Australian Presidential election, Turnbull became the Liberal candidate for the presidency.
Turnbull Victory Speech

Turnbull delivering his victory speech on the 12th of December 2000.

His opponent was Labours leader of the opposition for Prime Minister, Kim Beazley, who won the vote to run for Labour in the election. Turnbull won the election with 57.32% of the popular vote.

First Presidency

During Turnbull's first term, he had record high approval ratings, with the lowest being during the opening months of the invasion of Iraq, reaching 34%. But once victories begun to occur, he reached a record high approval rating of 87%.

During the first year, he decided to visit Britain, mostly to help relations after the split from the royal family. He also began to smooth relations over with the incumbent prime minister John Howard, who was also part of the Liberal party. He also increased the military budget by two million dollars, an action not endorsed by Howard or much of the upper house. In 2001, he pledged he visited the US to speak with the new President, George W. Bush, which both had clear similarities with from the beginning. He stayed their visiting many cities on the east coast, but on September the 11th, terrorist attacks on the World Trade centre occurred. Turnbull alongside the Bush, visited New York, and Turnbull, travelled back to Australia 2 weeks later.

When he returned, it was almost voting day for the position of Prime Minister of Australia. It was contested between Labour leader Kevin Rudd (due to the previous leader, Kim Beazley, going into the upper house after his defeat in the previous election) and the liberal John Howard. Turnbull Pledged support for Howard in the race, which he eventually won getting 63.18% of the popular vote.

Near the end of his first term, he visited troops in Afghanistan and Iraq, mostly to boost votes among the military and groups that supported the military. His speeches before the beginning of the second election, promoted the war, which isolated anti-war groups.

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