The election came amid a cost-of-living crisis triggered by the highest rate of inflation in two decades
Anthony Albanese is set to become Australia’s new prime minister after incumbent Scott Morrison conceded defeat in the country’s general election.
Mr Albanese, whose Labor Party is expected to form a minority government, will become Australia’s sixth prime minister in the last 10 years.
Australia has been an outlier on issues like climate change, but that appears to be changing now that the country has voted for parties in favor of greater action on the issue.
So who is Anthony Albanese – and what are the likely final results of the Australian election?
Here’s what you need to know.
Who is Scott Morrison?
Scott Morrison, 54, is Australia’s outgoing Prime Minister.
He took office in 2018 when he was elected leader of the conservative Liberal Party – a centre-right party that has been in power in a coalition with the National Party since 2013.
In that time it had two leaders alongside Mr. Morrison – Tony Abbott and Malcolm Turnbull.
The Liberals have close ties to the UK Conservative Party, with both parties employing the services of political strategist Lynton Crosby – who worked with Boris Johnson on his 2008 mayoral campaign in London.
Isaac Levido, a protégé of Crosby who spurred Johnson’s victory in the 2019 UK general election, led Scott Morrison’s campaign in the 2022 general election in Australia.
While Scott Morrison won the 2019 Australian election, his tenure was marked by gaffes and controversial policy decisions.
When major global warming-related fires ravaged Australia in December 2019, Mr Morrison was heavily criticized for vacationing in Hawaii during the crisis.
Despite an apology, he was harassed while visiting a devastated city and also refused to make a link between the fires and climate change.
In fact, much of Mr Morrison’s tenure has been characterized by climate skepticism.
The soon-to-be former Australian Prime Minister has indicated he will also step down as leader of the Liberal Party.
The governing coalition has not only been pressured by Labor in the polls, but has also had to fight against so-called Teal candidates – independent Conservatives who are calling for more action on climate change.
Who is Anthony Albanese?
Scott Morrison’s successor, Anthony Albanese, is set to become the first Italo-Australian Prime Minister and the first Labor Party leader since Kevin Rudd’s resignation in 2013.
Mr Albanese, 59, is one of Australia’s longest-serving politicians.
He sits on the left of the Labor Party and is a longtime supporter of Australia’s free healthcare system, an advocate for the LGBTQ+ community and a Republican.
In the 2022 election campaign, however, he moved towards the political center.
He has backtracked on his earlier calls for tougher climate action, backed Australia’s controversial policy of turning boats carrying asylum seekers away, and has also taken a tougher stance on China – which is increasing its military presence in the Pacific.
Born in New South Wales in 1963, Mr Albanese was raised in council housing by a single mother, Maryanne Ellery, who was on disability.
His father, Carlo Albanese, was an Italian businessman whom his mother met while traveling through Europe.
Mr Albanese joined the Labor Party in his 20s and worked in politics at state and federal levels before being elected to the Australian Parliament in 1996 on his 33rd birthday.
When Labor was elected under Kevin Rudd’s leadership in 2007, he served as Minister for Infrastructure and Transport – a role he also held under Mr Rudd’s successor, Julia Gillard.
After the 2019 general election, he replaced Bill Shorten as leader of the opposition in Australia.
Mr Albanese has pledged to introduce a major public spending package to support Australia’s welfare sector, reduce childcare costs and boost production in the country.
Other policies include a target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 43% by 2050 and a strengthened welfare state.
In addition to rising real estate prices, Australia is currently struggling with the highest inflation rate since 2001.
The Labor government will also hold a referendum to give indigenous peoples more rights.
What were the results of the 2022 Australian election?
The final results of the Australian election are yet to be announced, with millions of votes yet to be tallied.
There are 151 seats in Australia’s House of Representatives, with early counts suggesting Labor will win 71 seats – five just short of a majority.
The conservative liberal-national coalition is expected to win 38 seats.
There is uncertainty about how many seats the parties will have as more postal votes than usual have been cast due to Covid-19.
These voices will not be added until Sunday (May 22nd).
Despite the uncertainty, Scott Morrison has conceded defeat because of a crucial summit with US President Joe Biden and the heads of state and government of Japan and India on Tuesday (May 24) in Tokyo.
“I think it’s very important for this country to have certainty. I think it’s very important that this country can move forward,” Mr Morrison said in his concession speech.
“And especially as this week progresses with the important meetings that are being held, I think it is extremely important that there is a very clear understanding of the government of this country.”
Additional reporting by PA
https://www.nationalworld.com/news/world/australia-election-2022-who-anthony-albanese-prime-minister-sworn-in-scott-morrison-3703838 Who is Australia’s new Prime Minister Anthony Albanese?