Aussie PM vote: Turnbull beats Abbott
AUSTRALIA will get its fifth prime minister in eight years after the ruling Liberal Party yesterday voted out Tony Abbott in favour of longtime rival Malcolm Turnbull, following months of infighting and crumbling voter support.
Mr Turnbull, a former tech entrepreneur and multi-millionaire, won a secret party vote by 54 to 44, Liberal Party chief whip Scott Buchholz told reporters after the meeting in Canberra.
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop was elected deputy leader of the party which, with junior coalition partner the National Party, won a landslide election in 2013.
"Ultimately, the prime minister has not been capable of providing the economic leadership our nation needs," Mr Turnbull told reporters at Parliament House ahead of the vote. "We need a different style of leadership."
Mr Abbott pledged to fight the challenge but was ultimately unsuccessful in overcoming the "destabilisation" that he said had been taking place within the party over months.
He walked stony faced out of the party room following the vote and did not speak to reporters.