PM announces election for September 14

PM announces election for September 14

Judith Ireland and Daniel Hurst

Prime Minister Julia Gillard has announced the federal election date as September 14 this year.

In a surprise move, Ms Gillard broke with tradition to set the election date months before the polling date – effectively setting the country up for a campaign season lasting more than seven months.

“Time is not for wasting. So decisions have to be made about how we use our time this year,” Ms Gillard said in a speech to the National Press Club in Canberra.

It comes as Opposition Leader Tony Abbott launched a mini-campaign, ahead of the first week of parliament this week.

This is well before the latest possible election date for the House of Representatives of November 30, 2013.

The writs for the election will be issued on August 12, setting up a short parliamentary year until the election. This will see the House of Representatives dissolved and half the Senate up for re-election.

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