Australian federal election announced for August 21
Sunday, July 18, 2010
"Today I seek a mandate from the Australian people to move Australia forward," Ms Gillard said. She took the office of prime minister on June 24 after the Australian Labor Party caucus elected to remove Kevin Rudd from the role.
Directly after the June 24 caucus meeting, Senator Michael Forshaw told media , "the new leader elected unopposed is Julia Gillard and the deputy will be Wayne Swan." The "leadership spill", as this scenario is known, occurred at 9:00am Australian Eastern Standard Time that morning (11:00 pm UTC the previous day). According to reports, there was no ballot after Rudd pulled out.
Gillard became Australia's first female prime minister in the country's 109 year history and has been sworn in as such by Australia's first female Governor-General, Quentin Bryce.
"At the launch of our campaign this morning we had representatives from the Opposition, the shadow minister for youth as well as the Greens spokesperson for youth showing that this is not about who people vote for, it's about the fact that they've got the chance to vote," said Ms Gillard. The electoral roles close at 8pm Monday night.
Her opposition, Tony Abbott has openly stated that his shadow cabinet is ready to govern. “This is a bad government and it deserves to lose" he continued.
To win the election, the Coalition (Liberal-National parties) will need to gain 17 extra seats, with a recent opinion poll (Newspoll) tipping Labor in a two party preferred category, 53-47.
The campaign will last five weeks, one of the longest in Australia's history.
- "Australian Labor Party caucus vote to change prime minister" — Wikinews, June 24, 2010
- Emma Rodgers. "Game on for winter election" — , June 17, 2010
- Joe Kelly. "Gillard sets August 21 Australian election date" — , July 17, 2010