Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Gillard Remains Australian PM

The fallout from last month's Australian election has been settled. Julia Gillard will remain as Prime Minister after two independent MPs agreed to back her Labor government.

Gillard and opposition leader Tony Abbott of the conservative Liberal Party (folks, that's not an oxymoron) contested Australia's closest election in nearly seven decades. The election came after Gillard ousted Kevin Rudd in a palace coup in June. Rudd will have a senior cabinet post in Gillard's administration.

But despite the inclusion of Rudd, the schism between Gillard and the Ruddites is going define Australian Labor politics for years to come. Given the fragility of Gillard's coalition, I think it is a question of when and not if the Ruddites oust Gillard in the same manner. The beneficiary of this chasm will ultimately be Abbott who could enjoy a tenure as Prime Minister as long as that of John Howard.

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