Rudd, 52, a former diplomat who speaks fluent Mandarin, entered federal parliament in 1998. He is the first prime minister since 1972 to have failed to serve in the role for less than 1,000 days and is the country’s shortest serving leader since William McMahon lost power in 1972.
The following is a timeline showing Rudd’s tenure as Labor leader.
Dec. 4, 2006:
Rudd elected opposition leader, defeating Kim Beazley in Labor party room ballot 49-39.
Nov. 24, 2007:
Labor party wins office, ending John Howard’s Liberal- National Party coalition’s 11-year rule.
Dec. 3, 2007:
Australia ratifies Kyoto protocol.
Feb. 13, 2007:
Rudd offers nation’s first apology to Aborigines taken from their families for assimilation with the white community, a period known as the “Stolen Generation.”
Oct. 14, 2007:
Rudd announces fiscal stimulus of A$10.4 billion ($9.1 billion) to be given to pensioners, home buyers and families to boost the economy.
Dec. 15, 2008:
Rudd announces plans for an emissions trading scheme, aiming to reduce carbon emissions by 5 percent to 15 percent. Describes climate changes as “one of the greatest moral and economic challenges of our time.”
Feb. 3, 2009:
Government announces second round of stimulus measures, spending A$42 billion on construction projects including roads and schools as well as handouts to families and low-income earners.
Dec. 1, 2009:
Feb. 26, 2010:
Peter Garrett stripped of some responsibilities as Rudd scraps housing-insulation program that caused the death of four workers.
April 27, 2010:
Cabinet delays emissions trading legislation until 2012
May 2, 2010:
Rudd announces so-called Resource Super Profits Tax, a 40 percent tax on earnings from resource companies like BHP Billiton Ltd. and Rio Tinto Group.
May 4, 2010:
Labor party loses its lead for the first time since coming to power in 2007, according to Newspoll.
June 24, 2010:
Julia Gillard wins Labor party leadership unopposed, becoming Australia’s first female prime minister after Rudd stands down.