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Australia gets its 1st female prime minister as Rudd ousted

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Wow, this came out of the blue. Maybe there was some news in Australia that he was in trouble, but I didn't see anything about it.

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It certainly was sudden. As much as I didn't like Rudd, I'm not happy about this. I don't trust Gillard, she said she wouldn't challenge, then as soon as her loyalty is questioned she goes after him. I also feel sorry for Rudd, yes backing down on climate change was bad, but in general his leadership wasn't disastrous.

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I don't like it when a country changes its leadership this way. I voted for Rudd, not Gilliard. If Rudd is doing a bad job, then it should be the electorate that votes him out at the next election. A leader should never quit but stay until election time - whether the poll numbers are in his/her favor or not.

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Rudd is speaking now, he's really choking back tears, it's depressing to watch, and he's making good points about his achievements too.

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But an autocratic leadership style in a democratic society is grounds for upheaval.

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um, it's a Parliament folks, that's how a Parliament works. Very Kan like as it happens

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Gillard's looking far younger now than in the image above. The new stylist is doing their job.

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I voted for Rudd, not Gilliard. If Rudd is doing a bad job, then it should be the electorate that votes him out at the next election.

Good comment Smartacus!!! Backroom factional deals are not the way politics should be conducted.

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There was an article on BBC last night about this.

Looks like Rudd called for the vote because he said he is confident he would win.

Article said that the populace liked but few of his fellow politician did and predicted that he would lose.

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Backroom factional deals are not the way politics should be conducted.

Agreed. But it's usually the case

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A lady in charge of Down Under...this is not good...

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If you don't live in his electorate you did not vote for Rudd, you voted for the local Labour Party candidate. That is how it works in Australia.

While it seems to have happened quickly at the end it seems to have been brewing for a long time. From what you hear it seems that he comes across well at the beginning but then starts to rub people the wrong way.

My personal opinion is that he has done an OK job but there have also been a few big stuff ups and bad press about his actions when things haven't gone his way.

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they will be wanting the right to vote next :)

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What a mess. I thought there was an election this year anyway?

Not a classy way to get a so called first female prime-minister.

In my mind this one doesn't count.

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majimeaussie, Agree with you. With an election in the offing, he fell on his sword to allow Gillard time to establish herself as leader. I think Rudd had a lot more to offer, but his current unpopularity and a few gaffes have left him a bit of a liability for election prospects. Having said that, Gillard is a capable politician and I think she'll serve Australia well. On a side note, I wonder whether Rudd suffered similarly to Gough Whitlam in that he tried to change too much too quickly? Any thoughts?

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I wonder whether Rudd suffered similarly to Gough Whitlam in that he tried to change too much too quickly? Any thoughts?

Doubtful-- he isn't a revolutionary PM. He did put off many campaign pledges (Broadband network, carbon tradings, etc).

According to a recent survey, Labor's suffering in the polls due to 3 things: 1) asylum policy-- Rudd is clearly in the left when it comes to border protection 2) carbon tradings 3) and Rudd himself.

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What a mess. I thought there was an election this year anyway? Not a classy way to get a so called first female prime-minister.

Yes, it was a tense night last-night (Aussie punters didn't have to wait for the official announcement btw). And now the Australians have a nat'l leader that is a female... similar to one we have in NSW!

The similarities of course just don't end there =/

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Rudd learns the consequences of threatening to take Japan to the International Court of Justice over a silly issue such as whaling. People want politicians to focus on real issues, not Japan bashing.

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A Welsh born lady leading Australia - who'd have thought it. Good Luck to her. At least it's not Pauline Hanson!

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Stupid comment bubzabub, this is wholly concerned with domestic politics, most Australians don't have strong feelings about the whaling issue. Man that was an amazingly dumb comment.

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So the Labor party sack a Prime Minister who, both historically and by the latest opinion polls, looked the goods to win the upcoming election. While it is true that we didn't vote directly for Rudd, it was his platform that we voted for when we chose our local representatives. I really don't like this. It shows disrespect to the voting populace. I kinda wish the Liberals had kept Turnbull as their leader so I could change my vote to them. I'll never vote for them while Abbott is the leader. Wouldn't vote Green if you paid me as they see everything in black and white only. Leaves me with no real voting option now... :(

Bubzabub, way to go in showing everyone you have no idea what you're talking about. Keep up the good work. You are indeed but a pale shadow of the one you are trying to imitate.

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you voted for Rudd?? dont you mean you voted for the labor party?

we dont have presidents in australia, parties are in control.

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Rudd learns the consequences of threatening to take Japan to the International Court of Justice over a silly issue such as whaling. People want politicians to focus on real issues, not Japan bashing.

mmm... didn't know the NSW Right are worked up by whaling. What a silly comment.

While it is true that we didn't vote directly for Rudd, it was his platform that we voted for when we chose our local representatives. I really don't like this. It shows disrespect to the voting populace. I kinda wish the Liberals had kept Turnbull as their leader so I could change my vote to them. I'll never vote for them while Abbott is the leader. Wouldn't vote Green if you paid me as they see everything in black and white only. Leaves me with no real voting option now...

This year anything goes!

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She looks pretty good....

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Yeah, I mean she seems pretty enough.

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Maybe peole from aus can enlighten us, as she annpounced yet whaqt will change under her compared to Rudd. Ex,: Is the Lawsuit against Japan at the ICR still happening, etc?

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"Is the Lawsuit against Japan at the ICR still happening, etc?"

Ooooh I think so... Gillard is further left than Rudd. She's ditched a mining tax, and is more likely to go back to carbon trading...etc. Undoubtedly Peter Garrett will be let off his leash a little as well... I can see him campaigning against whaling (like he used to when he was with the Oils.)

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Sirgamble.

Thx, not being in aus we don't get a lot of info about your politicians and the local ongoings.

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Gillard is certainly more personable than the arrogant Rudd, but whether she makes a better prime minister, only time will tell. She owes a lot to the union movement who have backed her through her political career, and carries a lot of baggage such as the Building the Education Revolution fiasco (though Rudd took much of the brunt for this colossal waste of money).

This so-called bloodless coup has been in the making for a few weeks now. We've had Gillard regularly stating that Rudd has her complete support. In Australian politics, that usually means the opposite!

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bubzabub - Rudd learns the consequences of threatening to take Japan to the International Court of Justice over a silly issue such as whaling.

Who is this plonker? I wonder if he/she has any idea just how ridiculous this statement is. Then again, obviously not!

With the election coming I fear this 'old darl' is just the lamb lining up for the slaughter.
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Disillusioned at 07:09 PM JST - 24th June bubzabub - Rudd learns the consequences of threatening to take Japan to >the International Court of Justice over a silly issue such as whaling. Who is this plonker? I wonder if he/she has any idea just how ridiculous >this statement is.

It doesn't seem so silly when you consider that not one mention about whaling is made in the article.

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With the election coming I fear this 'old darl' is just the lamb lining up for the slaughter.

Rudd has certainly committed himself to the new PM, which is a good thing! Gillard's an emphatic choice to lead Labor to the next election. It'll be interesting to watch the new-PM sell herself to the Australians-- and for them to buy her message and Labor over again!

(It's possible though that the factions who gave Ms Gillard the PM-ship might want to hang on till maybe March or April next year-- which I'm sure is allowed and quite possible.)

Her one resonating message today is "hers will be a good gov't". It is a very shrewd statement given her role in halting Rudd's term as PM. But it's highly doubtful that her party will be-- as you said-- lining up for the slaughter. Given Gillard's soaring popularity with Labor voters, it'll be naive to think the party could lose. Today's numbers says a lot!

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The leadership challenge was not decided by a move from the caucus but by a tiny handful of unknown factional bosses and union bureaucrats responding directly to the demands of powerful corporate and financial elites for a revamping of the government.

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2010/jun2010/rudd-j24.shtml

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The leadership challenge was not decided by a move from the caucus but by a tiny handful of unknown factional bosses and union bureaucrats responding directly to the demands of powerful corporate and financial elites for a revamping of the government.

Bholder, what planet are you from?!

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jruaustralia at 09:38 PM JST - 24th June

What are the chances she’s been put in to take the fall at the next election? The Brits did this with John Major and it went horribly wrong for them when he won. Who is next in line in the Labour party that doesn’t want to be seen as being one of the Rudd axe men? I’m not that well up on Australian politics but it is usual to put a deposable face in place and then bring out the real new leader when the party is closer to the election. I have to agree though that it wasn’t the best way for Australia to get it’s first female PM.

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grafton, there really isn't anyone else other than Gillard to run the party now Rudd is gone, so I can see her as being put up to "take the fall". In the latest polls, Rudd was ahead of the opposition, so they were actually in a winning position, if only narrowly. This is why this whole thing stinks of backroom factionalism. Rudd doesn't have the factional backing, and the first sign of a drop in his popularity and the knives were planted firmly in his back. I'm starting to seriously think that I don't want a puppet of these factions (Gillard) to be PM for another 3 years.

For those who don't know the reasons behind all this, Rudd (with Gillard as his deputy) set up a heavily discounted home insulation program that wasn't properly regulated and it resulted in many houses burning down and a number of people dying. On top of that, they set up a program to spend large amounts of money to build new buildings in schools across the country and many companies vastly over-quoted their estimates, cashing in while leaving schools with virtually useless buildings. Finally, Rudd announced a new tax on the mining industry, which was the main industry that made Australia the only Western country not to fall into recession during the GFC, and the mining industry has started to fight back with mass advertising campaigns.

All this things have been done by Rudd without a lot of consultation with his party and people who are used to holding the power behind the scenes are not happy with him. With the drop in popularity of Rudd, they can now move to get rid of him and go back to the factions holding the real power.

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have you checked the link? anything you disagree with concretely? or do you just prefer insults as way to conduct a discussion?

Bholder, your previous post is quirky. I live in Australia. I live in NSW. I know the factional politics here. Please save yourself by not saying anything more =/

The Brits did this with John Major and it went horribly wrong for them when he won.

I love how you pulled off Major. It's a very reasonable comparison. But Ms Gillard don't even need to leave her state to find a winning strategy. She just need to replicate the Bracks-Brumby winning strategy of sticking with the script handed by the powerbrokers-- certainly astute.

Also it depends on how we, the voters, remember Rudd. If she comes up too defensive-- on Rudd, then it won't work for her. It certainly didn't worked for Major to give an impression that the apple fell too far from the tree!

For now, and to answer your question, Gillard had been shrewd.

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"The circumstances of Rudd’s removal are a graphic exposure of the thoroughly worm-eaten character of both the Labor Party and the entire system of so-called parliamentary democracy in Australia."

not that it's any better in other "developed" countries, mind. not to mention the poorer 9/10 of the planet

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All this things have been done by Rudd without a lot of consultation with his party and people who are used to holding the power behind the scenes are not happy with him. With the drop in popularity of Rudd, they can now move to get rid of him and go back to the factions holding the real power.

So Donkusai, should the new-PM give the impression that the apple did fell too far from the tree? =/

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jruaustralia at 10:55 PM JST - 24th June

The leadership challenge was not decided by a move from the caucus but by a tiny handful of unknown factional bosses and union bureaucrats responding directly to the demands of powerful corporate and financial elites for a revamping of the government.

Bholder, what planet are you from?!

I'm not intimately familar with the Australian system but Bholder's post might not be that far from the truth. Under the Parliamentary system, the voters elect a party and the party selects a PM. Regardless of why Rudd asked for a vote, he gambled and lost. Gillard was selected by the Labor Party with the blessing of it's fianancial backers.

I doubt that changing a PM was a last minute or spur of the moment decision and the fact that all this took place out of sight of the public and the press suggests that powerful bosses, bureaucrats, corporate and financial elites were behind the move.

IMHO, of course.

Best of luck to Australia and PM Gillard.

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jruaustralia at 12:04 AM JST - 25th June

Thanks. I had more of a feeling that there might a parallel with something like the Major arrangement rather than anything in detail, as said I am not that well up on Australian politics. She seemed to slide so easy and yet not have what might be termed the heavies at her back. Like a stop gap to keep the party happy until it was time to get the real man in place without any of the dirt having stuck to him. Thanks for the help on this one.

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donkusai at 11:57 PM JST - 24th June

“This is why this whole thing stinks of backroom factionalism. Rudd doesn't have the factional backing, and the first sign of a drop in his popularity and the knives were planted firmly in his back. I'm starting to seriously think that I don't want a puppet of these factions (Gillard) to be PM for another 3 years.”

So at the next election does she have a chance of staying in power? Or what are the odds on Rudd trying a come back? 3 years is a long time and he does seem to have made some of the voters happy.

Also thanks for you help on this, in a way I was a little surprised at myself for just how little I know about what is happening in Australia. It’s your own fault though, you are all such quiet and retiring souls (ha ha). Thanks.

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Grafton,

Or what are the odds on Rudd trying a come back? 3 years is a long time and he does seem to have made some of the voters happy.<

Not likely, I think. Rudd is now damaged goods in the Labor party, and his autocratic style hasn't won him a lot of friends in the parliamentary party. Add to this Rudd's enormous ego that wouldn't risk another crack at the leadership lest he lose the challenge. I predict he'll slink off to a cushy job at the UN and join the rest of those corrupt and incompetent bureaucrats.

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Good post donkusai, that is just the impression that I was getting and why I didn't like the turn of events. I think that if Rudd had occaisionally shown a fraction of the emotion that he did in his final speech as PM, he wouldn't have lost public support (lately the media have really been attacking him for his public persona), and this could all have been avoided. Just as an aside, I really hate the minority of commentators who talk about how good it is that Gillard is a woman, talk about being played.

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She has no children? Sad. She would not last long in US politics! LOL

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Both Hatoyama's and Rudd's parties were elected into power by people who believed in their campaign promises. When they reneged on those promises and became a liability, the party bosses correctly got rid of them. Take note, Mr Obama?

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Wow! This happened exactly the same in Canada years ago. The PM stepped down and all of a sudden we had a female PM. There has not been an elected female PM since.

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netrek whatexactly do you mean? If she was of US character she would not last? Instead lets hope because of this, she knows how to last.

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Hopefully for the sake of Australia's credibility in the international community she will back off the culturally imperialist issue of telling other nations what they can and cannot eat.

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yeah wouldnt want that. and wouldnt want a situation where workers arent covered somewhere down the track either. theyve been offering good situations for certain jobs lately though, so whats the problem, lack of numbers still?

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