A woman to run Australia for the first time next weekNovember 26th, 2007 - 3:32 pm ICT by admin
Sydney, Nov.26 (ANI): A woman will run Australia for the first time in history next week.
Labor’s Julia Gillard is the deputy prime minister-elect following last Saturday’s federal election win that brought up to nine new women into the House of Representatives.
Gillard will be elevated to acting prime minister when Kevin Rudd travels to Bali for climate-change talks next week.
“I will be acting prime minister when he goes to Bali, obviously it will be a little moment - first time a woman’s done the job,” news.com.au quoted Gillard as saying on Channel 7 today.
“I’ll be very careful while I do it I promise.”
Gillard said she did not enter politics to bridge the gender divide, but the federal election result showed women were keen to see more of their gender in senior political roles.
She said a large number of “tremendously talented” women were likely to be part of the front bench, including Jenny Macklin, Tanya Plibersek, Nicola Roxon and Penny Wong.
Gillard was an industrial lawyer before entering federal parliament in 1998 as the Member for Lalor, an electorate in Melbourne’s southwest.
She has said she expects to see a female prime minister in her lifetime, but it will happen only once both sides of politics have had several potential candidates.
Women won the right to vote in 1901, but it took another 42 years before a woman entered federal parliament, although others had been successful in state politics as early as the 1920s.
In 1990 Carmen Lawrence became Australia’s first female premier, holding the top job in Western Australia until an election defeat in 1993. She made the switch to federal politics the following year as the member for Fremantle, a role she relinquished on Saturday.
Joan Kirner made history in Victoria when she replaced John Cain in 1990 before losing power to Jeff Kennett’s coalition two years later.
Queensland has its first female premier after Peter Beattie handed over the reins to Anna Bligh earlier this year. (ANI)
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