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Rudd, Kevin (Australia)

Reference work entry

Introduction

Having defeated Kim Beazley to become leader of the Australian Labor Party (ALP) in Dec. 2006, Kevin Rudd maintained his political momentum into the Nov. 2007 general election in which he ousted Prime Minister John Howard’s centre-right government from power. He sought to modernize the ALP—out of power for more than a decade—but faced opposition from trade unions (over proposed changes to industrial relations laws) and from within the party. Although his fiscal policy plans were deflected by the effects of the global financial crisis, he maintained a high voter approval rating as a capable leader and economic manager through to 2010 when he stood down in June following a challenge from his deputy prime minister, Julia Gillard. He became prime minister for a second time in June 2013. Following the ALP’s defeat in the general election of Sept. 2013, Rudd resigned from parliament.

Early Life

Kevin Rudd was born on 21 Sept. 1957 in Queensland, the son of a dairy farmer who...

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