PM born in Wales defeated

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard is leaving politics after losing a party leadership vote. She was born in Barry in 1961 before her family emigrated.

Live updates

Gillard confirms she will leave Parliament

Australia's Welsh born Prime Minister Julia Gillard has confirmed that she is ending her political career. She was defeated earlier today by Kevin Rudd in a Labor party leadership election and is preparing to resign as Prime Minister.

Ms Gillard says she will not stand again in her constituency, known in Australia as an electorate.

In view of his election [Kevin Rudd] I have written to the Governor-General asking her to commission Mr Rudd as PM of Australia.

I will shortly leave from the Parliament to see Governor-General on this matter.

In accordance with the pledge I gave earlier today I announce that I will not recontest the federal electorate of Lalor at the forthcoming election.

I will have time in the coming weeks to be back home in my electorate to say hello and goodbye to the community that I've had the absolute privilege of representing in this Parliament since 1998.

– Julia Gillard
  1. Nick Powell

Welsh born Prime Minister leaves Australian politics

In a bid to improve her popularity, Julia Gillard was photographed knitting a toy kangaroo for the royal baby Credit: The Australian Women’s Weekly/Grant Matthews

The political career of Australia's Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, whose parents were police officers in Barry, appears to be over after losing a snap leadership vote she called earlier today. Ms Gillard was born in the Welsh town in 1961, shortly before her family emigrated.

Julia Gillard lost the vote of Labor party MPs in Canberra by 57 votes to 45. She was beaten by Kevin Rudd, the man she succeeded as Prime Minister in 2010. An election is due this year and her minority government is well behind the opposition in the polls.

She called the vote to try to unite her party, saying that whoever lost should leave politics. Julia Gillard is expected to resign as Prime Minister tomorrow, ending a political career she credited to her father John. He was a former miner from Cwmgwrach near Glynneath, who studied at night school.

When he died last year, she told the Australian Parliament that she would not be there "if my father hadn't brought from the Welsh valleys a deep sense of attachment to labour values, a profound belief in the benefits of [trade] unionism and also ... in the life-changing nature of education".

Unlike her Welsh-speaking predecessor Billy Hughes, Julia Gillard was actually born in Wales. Like his contemporary David Lloyd George, he grew up in Caernarfonshire but was born in England.


Back to top