Julie Bishop’s rising star

Not only has she been spotted at the Spring Racing Carnival with her alleged new beau, Julie Bishop has been named Australian magazine, Harper’s Bazaar, Woman of the Year. On top of her increased profile as Foreign Minister during the handling of the MH17 disaster, Ms Bishop’s star certainly seems to be on the rise, so should Tony Abbott watch his back?

Polls indicate that Julie Bishop is now level with Tony Abbott in terms of preferred leader of the Coalition Government, eclipsing both Joe Hockey and Malcolm Turnbull, who have long been considered next in line should Mr Abbott decide enough is enough. According to the latest Fairfax Ipsos poll, both Abbott and Bishop are on a 20 per cent standing as preferred leader.

Ms Bishop flatly refuses to describe herself as a feminist although the photo in Harper’s Bazaar certainly proves she has a feminine side. And although she usually shies away from gender issues, her speech at the National press Club last week clearly states her position. “I’m a female politician, I’m a female foreign minister … get over it,” Ms Bishop told the assembled audience of female media.

With the votes close between Bill Shorten and Tony Abbott as preferred Prime Minister, split 30 to 39 per cent respectively in a Newspoll on 4 November, could it be time for the Liberal Party to capitalise on Julie Bishop’s popularity.

Read more and see her photo at HarpersBazaar.com.au

What do you think? Is Australia ready for another female Prime Minister? Would Julie Bishop get your vote over Tony Abbott? Or is Mr Abbott doing just fine in the role?