‘I’ve given my all’
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Josh Frydenberg addresses the media on Sunday. Photo: AAP Image/James Ross
Josh Frydenberg addresses the media on Sunday. Photo: AAP Image/James Ross
Labor sweeps to power

‘I’ve given my all’

Labor has been ushered into power for the first time in nine years, with the Coalition losing a number of seats to Labor, and teal independents unseating six Liberal members, including former ambassador to Israel Dave Sharma in Wentworth, Goldstein’s Tim Wilson, and former treasurer Josh Frydenberg in Kooyong.

Main image by Josh Frydenberg addresses the media on Sunday. Photo: AAP Image/James Ross

One Josh was defeated while the other Josh was confident of staying in Parliament following last weekend’s federal election, which saw Labor ushered into power for the first time in nine years.

At the time of writing, Labor had won 74 seats and were leading the count in two others, according to the ABC. The Coalition has been reduced to just 57 seats and is also ahead in two other undecided contests.

Anthony Albanese, who was sworn in as Prime Minister on Monday before flying to Japan to represent Australia at the Quad leaders summit, said he was “humbled by this victory” and honoured to be given the opportunity to serve as Australia’s Prime Minister.

“My Labor team will work every day to bring Australians together,” he said.

“I want Australia to continue to be a country that no matter where you live, who you worship, who you love or what your last name is, that places no restrictions on your journey in life.

“And I can promise all Australians this – no matter how you voted, the government I lead will respect every one of you every day.”

Conceding defeat, former prime minister Scott Morrison said it had been a “great privilege to lead this great party and to lead this great nation”.

The Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ) said it looks forward to working with the new government.

“While we may not always agree with each other, we anticipate that the relationship will always be based on mutual respect,” the ECAJ said in a statement.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid also both congratulated their new Australian counterparts, while thanking the former government for its friendship.

While the Coalition lost a number of seats to Labor, swings against it also saw teal independents unseat six Liberal members, including former ambassador to Israel Dave Sharma in Wentworth, who was defeated by Allegra Spender, and Goldstein’s Tim Wilson, who was unseated by Zoe Daniel.

But former treasurer Josh Frydenberg was arguably the biggest scalp of the election, conceding his seat of Kooyong to teal independent Dr Monique Ryan on Monday afternoon.

“It’s been an incredible privilege to be the member for Kooyong over the past 12 years,” Frydenberg said.

“Every day, I’ve given my all to the job.

“I’d like to say thank you to all those I’ve had the pleasure to work with. It’s been quite a journey. Your support and friendship has been extraordinary and deeply appreciated.

“I now look forward to spending more time with my beautiful family.”

Though the Melbourne bayside electorate of Macnamara had not yet been called, Labor’s Josh Burns was leading with 54.5 per cent of the two-party preferred vote at the time of going to press.

“We’re hopeful. We’re not going to know for a little while,” Burns told The AJN.

Of the other Jewish MPs, Mark Dreyfus was re-elected in Isaacs while Mike Freelander was returned in Macarthur.

Stirling Griff, however, failed in his bid to remain in the Senate, while Kim Rubenstein’s tilt at the upper house was unsuccessful.

The election also saw the Greens’ best-ever result, with the party set to have three members in the House of Representatives and 12 in the Senate.

ECAJ co-CEO Peter Wertheim said their increased numbers “will enhance the political voices who are hostile to Israel and opposed to values and policies which are overwhelmingly supported by the Jewish community”.

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