Just heard that Rudd's back, Kevin 07, now Kevin 57 (votes)

BBC News - Kevin Rudd ousts Australia Prime Minister Julia Gillard

Kevin Rudd ousts Australia Prime Minister Julia Gillard

Kevin Rudd is more popular with voters than Ms Gillard

Kevin Rudd has ousted Prime Minister Julia Gillard as leader of Australia's Labor Party.

He won 57 votes in a leadership ballot of Labor MPs and senators called by Ms Gillard, who received 45 votes.

The change comes ahead of a general election due in September, which polls suggest Labor is set to lose.

After the vote, Ms Gillard confirmed she would stand by a pledge to resign from politics following a loss in the leadership challenge.

"I will not recontest the federal electorate... at the forthcoming election," she said.


Nick Bryant BBC News, Sydney
Kevin Rudd has exacted revenge on Julia Gillard, his one-time friend and deputy who ruthlessly deposed him in 2010. Ever since he was removed from the prime minister's office, he has sought to destabilise her leadership. This has been a very personal feud.
For Ms Gillard, it's a dramatic reversal. Three months ago, when she last called a leadership election, her rival could not muster enough support to mount a credible challenge.
In the meantime, the Labor government has slipped even further in the polls. Labor is not only one of the most brutal political parties in the world, but also one of the most calculating and pragmatic.
Its parliamentarians might not necessarily believe they can win the forthcoming election against the conservative opposition. Many already believe that's a lost cause. But many calculate Mr Rudd will at least prevent an electoral wipe-out, and maybe help save their own seats.

Ms Gillard added: "What I am absolutely confident of is it will be easier for the next woman and the woman after that and the woman after that, and I'm proud of that."
Mr Rudd is more popular with voters than Ms Gillard, and many believe Labor will perform better in the poll under him.
Wednesday's leadership test was the third faced by Ms Gillard since she took office in 2010. She herself ousted Mr Rudd as prime minister in 2010.
The BBC's Nick Bryant in Sydney says Mr Rudd has exacted his revenge, after three years of him and his supporters mounting a destabilisation campaign targeted very much at her.
The ballot followed months of speculation over the party's leadership and came after a day of drama that saw Mr Rudd's supporters push for a vote.
Limiting losses? Shortly before the vote, a key power-broker, Bill Shorten, switched his support to Mr Rudd, saying Labor stood a better chance in the polls with him.
Many people do not think Mr Rudd will win the election but he may mitigate the losses and shorten the time Labor could spend in opposition if the party loses, our correspondent says.

Returning officer Chris Hayes announces the result

A poll published earlier this month suggested that three cabinet ministers would lose their seats at the poll under Ms Gillard's leadership, but would retain their seats if Mr Rudd was leading the party.
The vote makes Mr Rudd the leader of the Labor Party, but not prime minister.
Ms Gillard must write to Governor General Quentin Bryce stating that she is resigning as prime minister before Mr Rudd can be sworn in.
A shake-up in the cabinet is expected following the leadership change.
Several key ministers, including Treasurer Wayne Swan, have said they will not serve under Mr Rudd.