Bill Shorten praises outgoing Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull

Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey. Image Getty

During a three-way vote, whoever comes last in the first round will be eliminated with a second round taking place to decide who becomes leader.

He had told colleagues that he would not run for party leader against Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. "I'm getting on with my job of delivering good government for the people of Australia, and supporting the Turnbull government in doing that".

Morrison is the fourth prime minister in five years, a period of political instability that Australia has not experienced since the early 1900s.

"My honest congratulations to Scott Morrison on his election as leader of the Liberal Party", he said.

On Thursday, he told reporters that Australians would be "rightly appalled by what they are witnessing".

Former Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull kisses his wife Lucy, while standing with daughter Daisy, and grandchildren Alice and Jack after a news conference in Canberra, Australia August 24, 2018.

Scott Morrison is keen to assure allies a week of turmoil in Australian politics poses no threat to worldwide relationships.

New Zealand has recently hit sticking points in the trans-Tasman relationship, including the impact on New Zealanders of Australia's policy of deporting foreigners who've served 12 months or more in prison or are deemed a threat to Australia. Morrison has ruled out calling an early general election but will face his first electoral test with a by-election for Turnbull's seat in Sydney.

"There was a determined insurgency from a number of people", Turnbull said. He has been a longtime advocate for progressive social policies and action on climate change.

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Scott Morrison to become Australia's next prime minister
Born in Sydney in 1968, Mr Morrison has been Australia's Treasurer - the equivalent of the UK's Chancellor - since September 2015. The policy has been widely condemned as a callous abrogation of Australia's worldwide obligations to help refugees.

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Despite his country's track record, Morrison has promised stability for Australia's political future.

Some also find his politics confusing - he started his career as a moderate in the ruling conservative Liberal Party and morphed into a conservative. "It is that it has looked like a government in an advanced state of political decay, and one that has largely forfeited its right to be taken seriously", the Conversation opinion newspaper noted.

"I mean, politics is a tough business", he said.

After serving as shadow immigration minister, Morrison moved straight into the government job when the Liberal party took power in 2013.

"There are no greater friends than the United States and Australia!"

"The government's problem is not so much that it has produced yet another of Australia's famous leadership crises".

Fast-forward to 2015 and Turnbull got his revenge by dramatically forcing Abbott from office in a Liberal Party coup, claiming the government faced defeat at the next election without change at the top.

On social issues, Morrison has stood to the right of the more moderate Turnbull, and opposed the legalisation of same-sex marriage a year ago.

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