CANBERA, Australia – Kevin Rudd, who twice won and lost the leadership of Australia's government during the past six years, is quitting politics.
Rudd first became prime minister after leading his center-left Labor Party to an election victory in 2007. He was deposed in an internal power struggle in 2010 and then returned to the nation's leadership only months before a conservative coalition won power in September elections.
Rudd told Parliament on Wednesday he would quit his House of Representatives seat by the end of this week for family reasons. The 56-year-old lawmaker surprised many commentators who had expected him to remain in politics to make a third bid for power after the next election due in 2016.