Polls open in Australia

Prime Minister Scott Morrison (right) and opposition leader Bill Shorten promise stable leadership after years of turmoil as election begins in Australia. EPA

AUSTRALIA – Australians began voting on Saturday in the first general election since political infighting ousted the nation’s fourth leader in a decade.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he has united his conservative government in the nine months since he replaced Malcolm Turnbull.

Labor opposition leader Bill Shorten pressed his case with stark policy alternatives.

Australia has mandatory voting and a record 16.4-million registered voters.

The nation holds elections every three years but no prime minister succeeded in serving a full term since 2007.

The poll took place just two days after the death of Bob Hawke, a long-serving former prime minister whose achievements have been hailed across the political spectrum. (BBC)


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