Tony Abbott

The Hon Tony Abbott MP
Leader of the Opposition
Liberal Party of Australia

Tony Abbott was born in London, England, to Australian parents. In 1960, his family returned to Australia, living in Sydney's eastern suburbs before moving to Chatswood.

He graduated from the University of Sydney, residing at St John's College, with a Bachelor of Economics and a Bachelor of Law. At university he gained media attention in opposing the then dominant left-wing student leadership. He went on to attend the Queen's College, Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar and graduated with a Master of Arts.

Mr Abbott was elected Member for Warringah at a by-election in March 1994. Prior to entering Parliament he was Executive Director of Australians for Constitutional Monarchy from 1993-94.

From 1990-93 he was press secretary and political advisor to the Leader of the Opposition, Dr John Hewson. His previous career was in journalism, where he wrote as a feature writer for The Bulletin and The Australian.

On the election of the Howard Government in 1996 Mr Abbott was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Employment, Education, Training and Youth Affairs.

Following the 1998 election he was appointed to the new portfolio of Minister for Employment Services.

In January 2001, Mr Abbott was promoted to Cabinet as Minister for Employment, Workplace Relations and Small Business. Following the 2001 election he was appointed Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations, Leader of the House and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service

Mr Abbott was appointed Minister for Health and Ageing on the 7 October 2003.

After the Federal election in 2007 Tony Abbott became Shadow Minister for Families, Community Services, Indigenous Affairs & the Voluntary Sector until he resigned from the Malcolm Turnbull shadow cabinet on 26 November 2009 in protest against Liberal Party policy.

Following a successful spill motion, Abbott defeated Turnbull 42 votes to 41 in the Liberal Party of Australia leadership election of 2009.

Mr Abbott lives in Forestville with wife Margaret and three daughters.

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