Treasurer Scott Morrison elected next Prime Minister of Australia

by RNZ / 24 August, 2018

New Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Photo/Getty.

RelatedArticlesModule - Related

Australia leadership crisis: Scott Morrison is now the PM.

Scott Morrison is the new leader of the Liberal Party and the thirtieth prime minister of Australia.

He won in the second round of voting, 45-40, against Peter Dutton. Julie Bishop was knocked out in the first round of voting.

Party whip Nola Marino told reporters gathered in Canberra there was an "overwhelming" vote in favour of Josh Frydenberg as deputy leader.

Mr Turnbull has told reporters in his outgoing speech that he will be leaving parliament "before too long".

How it happened

Mr Turnbull was given a spill petition by Mr Dutton today and commenced a party meeting to decided new leadership at midday (2pm NZT).

Earlier today the Australian solicitor-general found that Mr Dutton "is not incapable" of sitting in Parliament. 

Clockwise from top left, Australia's now former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, former home affairs minister Peter Dutton, Deputy Prime Minister Julie Bishop and Treasurer and now Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

Mr Dutton's interests in childcare companies had thrown his eligibility to be an MP into doubt.

The solicitor-general has found that the relationship between the government and Mr Dutton's business interests is not of a kind that prevents him from being a senator.

The three leadership aspirants were Mr Dutton, Julie Bishop and Scott Morrison.

Late on Thursday night it was also unclear whether a majority of Liberal MPs had signed a letter calling for another spill - a condition imposed by Mr Turnbull to oust those willing to knife him.

Even those in Mr Dutton's camp were unwilling to say they had enough votes to force the spill.

But momentum for change continued to build, with even those strongly opposed to a vote admitting the party must heal its wounds.

As voters express frustration at a bitter and divisive week in Canberra, government frontbencher Craig Laundy declared modern politics "broken".

"Until we have generational change inside politics and the next generation of politicians come through … I sadly think we are going to see more of the same," he said.

With Mr Turnbull not surviving the day, it means no prime minister has lasted a full term since John Howard lost the 2007 election.

Another Turnbull supporter, Darren Chester, apologised to voters and said they "deserve better than many of the things our Federal Parliament has served up in the past 10 years".

Constitution issue 'a red herring'

Mr Dutton's supporters dismissed the constitutional questions hovering over their man as a desperate attempt to undermine his challenge.

The Solicitor-General spent the night considering whether Mr Dutton's financial interest in two childcare centres that receive government subsidies made him ineligible to sit in Parliament.

He found that Mr Dutton "is not incapable" of sitting in Parliament.

Late on Thursday night, Mr Dutton published legal advice from David Bennett QC arguing there was no breach of the constitution.

Senator Seselja said the claim had already been tested in Senate estimate hearings and on the floor of Parliament.

"It was well known to the government and the Opposition, yet they didn't bring it to the Parliament," he said.

This article was first published on Radio NZ.

Latest

The enduring sandwich: What's not to like about bread and fillings?
94342 2018-09-23 00:00:00Z Food

The enduring sandwich: What's not to like about br…

by Margo White

Despite an apparent backlash against bread – against carbohydrates and gluten – the sandwich endures.

Read more
Humanity is on 'the highway to digital dictatorship', says Yuval Noah Harari
96527 2018-09-22 00:00:00Z Social issues

Humanity is on 'the highway to digital dictatorshi…

by Andrew Anthony

The author of worldwide bestsellers Sapiens and Homo Deus says our free will is at stake. We talk to Yuval Noah Harari about his new book.

Read more
Why there's no 'clash of civilisations' between Islam and the West
96558 2018-09-22 00:00:00Z Social issues

Why there's no 'clash of civilisations' between Is…

by Yuval Noah Harari

There is just one civilisation in the world, writes Yuval Noah Harari, and the West and Islam are joint participants in it.

Read more
The Kiwi cicada expert who's just 11 years old
94985 2018-09-22 00:00:00Z Science

The Kiwi cicada expert who's just 11 years old

by Ken Downie

Hamilton entomologist Olly Hills isn’t in high school yet, but he’s already a world expert – and he wrote a book.

Read more
Thackeray's Vanity Fair gets a clever update for the millenial age
96633 2018-09-22 00:00:00Z Television

Thackeray's Vanity Fair gets a clever update for t…

by Russell Brown

A new TV version of William Makepeace Thackeray’s 19th-century satirical novel taps into today's celebrity-Instagram culture.

Read more
The debate over the Serena Williams controversy was a dialogue of the deaf
96659 2018-09-22 00:00:00Z Sport

The debate over the Serena Williams controversy wa…

by Paul Thomas

Serena Williams’ US Open outburst was unbecoming but the umpire made a mess of his response.

Read more
The classical blokes saluting unsung women composers
96670 2018-09-21 14:16:06Z Music

The classical blokes saluting unsung women compose…

by The Listener

The suffrage celebrations get a soundtrack from all-male ensemble NZTrio.

Read more
Labour MPs stand behind Jacinda Ardern's action on Meka Whaitiri
96630 2018-09-21 07:31:30Z Politics

Labour MPs stand behind Jacinda Ardern's action on…

by Gia Garrick

The public will have to wait to see a report into an assault claim against MP Meka Whaitiri, who was yesterday stripped of her ministerial portfolios.

Read more