Tributes are flowing for former Liberal leader Andrew Peacock who served 28 years in federal parliament.
Tributes are flowing for former Liberal leader Andrew Peacock who served 28 years in federal parliament.

Peacock a ‘political great’: Frydenberg

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has described former Liberal leader Andrew Peacock as one of Australia's "political greats", joining other political heavyweights in paying tribute after the 82-year-old's death in the US overnight.

A stylish dresser, with a touch of sophistication, and dubbed the "colt of Kooyong", Mr Peacock was foreign minister from 1975-1980 under Malcolm Fraser.

Former federal leader of the Liberal Party Andrew Peacock posing for a portrait in 2019 at his home in Austin, Texas.Picture: Brian Birzer
Former federal leader of the Liberal Party Andrew Peacock posing for a portrait in 2019 at his home in Austin, Texas.Picture: Brian Birzer

He held the inner-Melbourne seat of Kooyong from 1966 to 1994; the same one Frydenberg has held for the past 11 years.

"Australia has lost one of its political greats in Andrew Peacock," the treasurer said in a statement.

Josh Frydenberg meets one of the “political greats” Andrew Peacock. They’re forever connected in history by holding the inner-Melbourne seat of Kooyong: Twitter
Josh Frydenberg meets one of the “political greats” Andrew Peacock. They’re forever connected in history by holding the inner-Melbourne seat of Kooyong: Twitter

"Combining style and substance, he left an indelible mark on the Australian political scene.

"As leader, minister and Member for Kooyong for 28 years he carried the baton of his predecessor Sir Robert Menzies, championing Liberal ideals and providing strong and good government."

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Mr Peacock was "one of our greatest Liberals who helped shape Australia and the Liberal Party over three decades".

Former prime ministers Tony Abbott and Malcolm Turnbull and former ex-Liberal leader John Hewson also spoke highly of Mr Peacock.

Mr Abbott took to social media to recognise his contribution to the Liberal party and Australian politics.

"Andrew Peacock was the happy warrior of Australian politics and the most genial man ever to lead the Liberal Party," he said.

Former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull called Mr Peacock a "progressive liberal leader", a good friend and mentor.

"Charming & witty, at home in the cabinet room as at the track. An elegant global citizen but indelibly Australian. RIP," Mr Turnbull posted on social media.

Mr Peacock was also known for his very public friendship with Academy Award-winning actor Shirley MacLaine.

Actor Shirley MacLaine with Andrew Peacock at a dinner in New York. She wrote that he was “charming, funny and a conservative” in her memoir. Picture: Supplied
Actor Shirley MacLaine with Andrew Peacock at a dinner in New York. She wrote that he was “charming, funny and a conservative” in her memoir. Picture: Supplied

In a 2011 article, Ms MacLaine wrote of her "longest-lasting relationship" with Mr Peacock in her memoir, 'I'm Over All That And Other Confessions'.

"He was charming, funny and a conservative. He used his voice like a snake oil salesman, which always made me laugh because, as I told him, 'I was also in the business of professional seduction through voice manipulation'. He took my comment good-naturedly," she said.

Actor Shirley MacLaine with politician Andrew Peacock in 1982. Picture: Supplied
Actor Shirley MacLaine with politician Andrew Peacock in 1982. Picture: Supplied

Mr Peacock held senior positions in the Gorton, McMahon and Fraser governments.

Former Victorian Premier said the fact Mr Peacock was never Prime Minister “was probably a reflection more of his generous character more than crass ambition.” Picture: Supplied
Former Victorian Premier said the fact Mr Peacock was never Prime Minister “was probably a reflection more of his generous character more than crass ambition.” Picture: Supplied

Following his political career in 1994, he served as a stint as the Australian Ambassador to the United States.

Mr Hewson, who led the Liberal party during the last four years (1990-94) of Mr Peacock's political career, said he was a "pleasure" to work with.

Former Victorian premier Jeff Kennett said he shared his "political highs and lows" with Mr Peacock as he tweeted his, and his wife's Felicity's, condolences to the former member's daughters Jane, Caroline and Annie.

"Andrew and I shared a long friendship of political high and lows. He was a very successful Foreign Minister," he posted on Twitter.

"As the Colt of Kooyong he, and his then wife Susan, carried the aspirations of the Liberal Party.

"That he did not become Prime Minister of the country was probably a reflection more of his generous character more than crass ambition. Farewell my friend."

Andrew Peacock and daughter Anne Peacock who wrote of her heartbreak of losing her father in a social media post. Picture: Michael Klein
Andrew Peacock and daughter Anne Peacock who wrote of her heartbreak of losing her father in a social media post. Picture: Michael Klein

Ann Peacock posted on social media of the heartbreak of losing her father.

"To my beautiful, loving, most caring, thoughtful, generous and brilliant father, you will be so greatly missed, your guidance and deep love for us will live in my heart, we are absolutely devastated.

"Daddy, love you more than the world, please continue to look after us all. You will live within us forever and ever."

Originally published as Peacock a 'political great': Frydenberg



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