While I was eating dinner last night, Australia’s prime minister was Tony Abbott. Today, while I was at brekky, it was Malcolm Turnbull.
In a not so unusual Australian political manner, Malcolm Turnbull has tumbled Tony Abbott in order to become the fifth Australian prime minister in the last eight years.
Tony Abbott’s growing unpopularity amongst the public, coupled with the constant fighting within the ruling Liberal Party over the last few months lead to a ballot vote last night which lead to a change in Australia’s political leadership.
Turnbull, a multi-millionaire, an entrepreneur and a supporter for LGBT rights, won a secret party vote by 54 to 44.
“I’m very humbled by the great honour and responsibility that has been given to me today,” an elated Turnbull told reporters during last night’s press conference, while trying, and failing, to not look smug.
Tony’s biggest challenge was to alleviate Australia’s $1.5 trillion economy which has been in turmoil ever since the end of the mining boom. His inability to control the economy, suppression of MPs and an unpopular image within the Australian public, where he was often called Phony Tony, simply aided Turnbull’s coupe in becoming the PM.
On a superficial level, the decision does come as pleasant one, however, one must remember that Turnbull has supported most of Tony Abbott’s’ infamous policies such as voting against the implementation of refugee protection conventions, RAAF bombing in Syria and carbon emission levels to name a few.
Labor party leader Bill Shorted was quick to respond to the cabinet reshuffle. “Australia does not need another out of touch, arrogant, Liberal leader. Australia needs a change of government,” Shorten told reporters in Canberra.
Tony Abbott left the meeting with a poker face and is yet to make any comment on the change in leadership. He’s yet to officially resign as the PM of Australia. In a very unlikely scenario, Tony Abbott could refuse to resign and call for a double dissolution election.
Social media was quick to jump in. #auspol and #libspill have been top trending on social media since last night.
And this tweet summarized it all.