AustraliaHawke ‘man who made modern Australia’ says Beazley
Labor's golden boy who transformed a nation
He was a beer-skolling union star who went on to become prime minister, modernise the economy and weep in public.
Video provided by A Current Affair
Western Australia Governor Kim Beazley has eulogised Bob Hawke as a man who "made modern Australia".
The former deputy prime minister, Labor leader and US ambassador spoke to Tracy Grimshaw on A Current Affair.
"Last night I could barely put two words together, I was so sad," he said.
"This morning I became elevated because you just saw a wonderful outpouring of appreciation of a really, genuinely great life.
'We have lost a favourite son': Bill Shorten pays tribute to Hawke
Labor leader Bill Shorten has paid tribute to Australia’s “favourite son” Bob Hawke, who has today died aged 89.
"As a friend of Bob's, you had a feeling there's a lot of people who shared your grief."
He said without the "massive" reforms instituted by Mr Hawke and his government, Australia would not enjoy the global stance it had.
"The reforms, which were done in a number of other countries as well, were not done as well as they were here," Mr Beazley said.
"Because Bob had a heart, and he was absolutely determined that he would ensure that everybody benefited as they came out of what was a substantial economic reconstruction.
"That was because he loved people."
He said without the reforms, Australian society would be less fair, "infinitely" less productive, and workers would be less well-paid.
A political powerhouse: Bob Hawke's legacy
Robert James Lee Hawke held office as the 23rd Prime Minister of Australia from 1983-1991.
But he rebutted the idea that Mr Hawke was only a man of his time.
"If he was a current politician, he would be adjusted to be a current politician," he said.
"Bob would have been a great politician whether he was our prime minister at Federation, our prime minister in World War Two, or our prime minister now."
And he said the current generation of politicians could learn from Mr Hawke's life and career.
He said while Mr Hawke took note of opinion polls or public sentiment, he regarded it as "merely the starting point" of a conversation.
"The end point was reform or change, adjusted by the things which made it acceptable," Mr Beazley said.
"Mere fact of public opposition didn't daunt him a bit, but he did not ignore it."
Pictures: Bob Hawke's life in pictures
Bob Hawke was 'more than prepared' for death, Blanche d'Alpuget says.
Former prime minister Bob Hawke did not vote in the federal election before his death last week at the age of 89, his wife Blanche d'Alpuget has revealed. "He decided he wasn't going to postal vote. He was going to go up in his wheelchair and vote, but he didn't get there," Ms d'Alpuget tells 7.30 in her first interview since Mr Hawke's death. Given the result of the election, she said it was "probably a good thing that he died when he did". Asked if Mr Hawke knew how much the public loved him, Ms d'Alpuget said: "I think he probably did, but he never spoke about it. "I think he did.
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