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Australia: exit polls point to victory for opposition leader Tony Abbott


Australia

Australia: exit polls point to victory for opposition leader Tony Abbott

The vote counting began in Australia as the conservative leader Tony Abbot was headed for a landslide election victory on Saturday.

Exit polls point to an end to Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s ruling party marred by infighting and a much-maligned carbon tax.

Tony Abbot has vowed to scrap the carbon tax and instead introduce taxpayer-funded incentives for polluters.

Kevin Rudd was once widely beloved by the public, becoming Australia’s most popular leader in three decades when he took on the top job. Now, his party is facing the prospect of an end to its six years in power amid deep voter frustration over years of party instability and bickering.

Despite the lack of overwhelming enthusiasm for opposition leader
Tony Abbott, he seems on track to guide his Liberal Party-led coalition to victory. An exit poll for the Nine television network found support for his coalition at 54.5 percent, compared to 45.5 percent for the ruling Labour party.

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Australian election: Rudd faces the prospect of an end to six years in power