Australia's election 2019 | The Interpreter

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Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced Thursday that the country's federal election will be held on 18 May.

Morrison led his pitch to voters with his conservative coalition's economic credentials, framing the election as a referendum on its record of managing Australia's finances. "The last time Labor was elected to form a government back in 2007 they inherited a strong economy and they inherited budget surpluses, and in the space of one year they turned a $20bn surplus into a $27bn deficit".

"We are ready for the election, we are ready for government", Shorten said.

Notably, Facebook has said it would temporarily block electoral advertisements bought from outside Australia ahead of the upcoming federal election in the country as a part of its approach to protecting voters from foreign meddling.

Picking up Morrison's focus on the importance of economic management, Shorten said only Labor could manage the economy "in the interests of working and middle-class people".

"You vote for me, you'll get me".

Australians will go to the polls on Saturday, May 18.

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Experienced Labor strategist Bruce Hawker said Labor had to be most wary of the coalition's attack on its negative gearing and franking credits policies.

Shorten, speaking after the Prime Minister's election announcement, touted a "fair and inclusive" vision for Australia, and emphasised his party's traditional strengths in health and education.

Shorten will also emphasize Labor's leadership stability and seek to capitalize on the leadership turmoil that has plagued the LNP. Morrison's governing coalition has been reduced to a minority in government, due to a series of party resignations.

Instability continued in the post after Turnbull was ousted from power by Morrison in a leadership vote in August previous year.

Candidates are fighting to claim seats of the 151 seats in the House of Representatives as well as half of the 76 seats in the Senate.

Labor has 69 lawmakers and the remainder are minor parties or independent legislators.

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