After leading the opposition to power since 2007, Anthony Albanese, Australia’s Labor Party leader, has stated that he wants to unify the country.
After Scott Morrison lost the election, he made his comments. This marked the end of almost a decade-long conservative rule.
Labor is currently just short of the 76 seats required to form a government. Therefore, it may need to rely on smaller independent parties such as the Greens or the so-called “teal independents”, which campaigned for policies of integrity and equality, tackling climate change, and other small independent parties.
This means that the composition of the new parliament will be less climate-skeptic than the one which supported Morrison’s pro coal mining administration.
As the record-breaking number of votes by post is counted, final results may take some time.
Friday’s government change allowed people infected by COVID to cast their vote over the telephone.
Voting is mandatory for adults in Australia.
Albanese, a republican with working-class roots, declared his victory and said, “I want the country to unify.”
“I believe people want to be together, look for common interests, and look toward that sense of shared purpose.
“I believe people are tired of division. What they want is for the nation to be united, and that’s what I plan to do.”
Labor pledged more financial assistance and a stronger safety net to Australia’s struggling with high housing prices and the highest levels of inflation since 2001.
The party also proposed establishing a Pacific defense school in response to China’s possible military presence on Solomon Islands. This would be in line with Australia’s foreign policy.
It is also aiming to combat climate change by achieving a 43% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, which is a much more ambitious target.
Morrison conceded defeat and said: “Tonight, I have spoken with the leader of the opposition, Anthony Albanese and I’ve congratulated his election victory tonight.
“I think it’s important that this country has security.
“I believe it’s important that this country can move ahead.”
Morrison also stated that he would step down as leader for the Liberal party.
His surrender ends the eight-year-old and nine month tenure of the conservative coalition.
After several leadership changes, Morrison was elected prime minister in 2018.
Boris Johnson, congratulating Mr Albanese for his election as prime Minister, stated: “Our countries share a long and bright history.
“As thriving democracies of likeminded beliefs, we work everyday to make the world safer, more secure, greener, and more prosperous.”
He spoke out to highlight the “unmatched proximity” between the two countries, saying that “the only difference between us is geographic.”
“I look forward working with Prime Minister Albanese over the coming weeks, months, and years as we face common challenges and show the importance of our shared value,” Johnson said.