Australia government loses crucial vote, leaving Israel embassy move in doubt

Australian Government Loses Majority With Election Defeat

Australian Government Loses Majority With Election Defeat

Due to preferences, Independent candidate Dr Kerryn Phelps has declared victory of the electorate, which takes in the rather affluent suburbs of Clovelly, Bondi, Bronte, Paddington and Watsons Bay. Postal votes, most of which are likely to favour...

Australian Broadcasting Corp. projections hailed Ms. Phelps as the victor after just 9 % of votes had been counted, forecasting she would gain a 57 percent share of votes on a two-party preferred basis.

Morrison became Australia's sixth prime minister in 10 years in August after his predecessor Malcolm Turnbull fell victim to infighting among the Liberals, and the suspense over the count in the by-election for Sydney's Wentworth constituency were in keeping with the unpredictable politics of recent times.

The defeat means that the Coalition will lose its one seat majority in the House of Representatives.

"This is on the Liberals, not on Dave Sharma", Mr Morrison told the packed function room.

The government's support for coal and inaction on climate change were key drivers of the protest vote in Wentworth, according to an exit poll conducted by research body the Australia Institute.

Tie that in with the signal from Wentworth that a good chunk of voters are waiting with baseball bats for the Liberals and it is not an environment conducive to the ship-steadying Morrison needs to do.

In a series of posts and videos, he said the Morrison government had been captured by right-wing "extremists" - he also created a "top 5 craziest Liberals" list.

Top US general 'uninjured' in Kandahar attack that killed Afghan general
On Thursday, an elite guard attacked a delegation leaving a high-level meeting on security plans for the elections. Even if the Taliban did not plan the attack, it is likely to hugely benefit them.

Ms Cathy McGowan, a member of the ruling government who resigned to sit as an independent, said she expects a meeting between the five lawmakers and the Prime Minister to happen on Monday. I think she'll have an impact there, in that chamber where personalities really do matter. "We in the Centre Alliance go through all these motions, make notes on the notice paper and the senators keep up with what they are voting on".

Sharma, who was Australia's ambassador to Israel between 2013 and 2017, congratulated Phelps on her victory, describing her as a "formidable" opponent and admitted his first electoral campaign was "bruising".

"I think people actually wanted a hung parliament, they actually wanted an independent on the cross bench so that decisions could be made with a more collaborative approach then just a rubber stamp for whatever. the Liberal Party wanted to do", Phelps told Studio 10.

"They have looked at Canberra and the Liberal Party has paid a big price tonight for the events of several months ago", he said, before adding defiantly, "But as a party, we will continue to rise again".

Sharkie, who had guaranteed the government confidence until after the byelection, said she wanted to hear how Morrison was going to deal with the children on Nauru.

"I know he is probably enjoying a bit of R&R with Lucy in NY, but I reckon he owes it to the party and the people of Wentworth to give Dave Sharma a solid, clear personal endorsement this week in particular".

A spokesman for Mr Morrison declined to comment.

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