Australian voters have pushed for an end to nine years of Liberal rule in favor of a centre-left opposition that has promised strong action on climate change. To form a majority government, parties need a majority of 76 seats. The Labor Party's Anthony Albanese, who won the election, will now be the new Prime Minister of Australia. After the election results were out, Morrison said he would resign as leader of the Liberal Party. He said that he takes responsibility for his party's defeat. The Labor Party currently holds 73 seats, according to the Australian Electoral Commission. Early vote counts showed a strong bias toward Greens candidates and independents, who sought emissions cuts far beyond commitments made by Morrison's coalition.
Who is Anthony Albanese
Albanese is one of Australia's longest-serving politicians and was briefly deputy prime minister under Kevin Rudd in 2013. He has earned a reputation as a defender of free healthcare, an advocate of LGBT rights, a Republican and a diehard rugby league fan. Albanese, 59, had a childhood spent by a single mother with the help of a disability pension. At the age of just 33, he reached Parliament in 1996 by winning the Sydney seat on a Labor Party ticket. In 2007, when Kevin Rudd's Labor Party came to power, Albanese was made Minister of Infrastructure and Transport. Due to internal strife in the party, the Prime Minister was changed and Anthony Albanese became Deputy Prime Minister. But his tenure as Deputy PM lasted only 10 weeks. His party lost in the next election.
Challenges ahead for Albanese as Prime Minister?
One of Albanese's first priorities as prime minister will be to rebuild relations with foreign leaders, who Morrison says has neglected foreign policy in recent years. China recently signed a military agreement with the Solomon Islands near Australia, China is planning to build its first military base in the Pacific. On Tuesday, Albanians are expected to be in Tokyo for talks with quad members from the United States, India and Japan, where they will discuss priorities for safeguarding free passage in the Indo-Pacific. Voters have turned to the Labor Party over the Liberal Party's inaction on climate change. Marija Taflaga, director of the Australian Politics Study Center at the Australian National University, noted the vote's shift to the Greens.