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Australian opposition leader favourite to win election

FILE - In this July 2, 2016, file photo, Australian Labor Party leader Bill Shorten speaks to supporters on a street after a breakfast show television interview on election day in Sydney. Shorten, the man most likely to become Australia's prime minister in elections on Saturday, May 18, 2019 has the support of his center-left Labor Party. (AP Photo/Rob Griffith, File)

CANBERRA, Australia — Bill Shorten, the man most likely to become Australia’s prime minister in elections on Saturday, has the solid support of his centre-left Labor Party behind him. But the Australian public isn’t so sure.

Even though the ruling conservative Liberal Party-led coalition has lagged behind Labor in opinion polls for the past two years, Shorten has been rated a less popular leader than Prime Minister Scott Morrison and the prime minister Morrison replaced in a Liberal Party revolt nine months ago, Malcolm Turnbull.

But despite an apparent lack of charisma, most experts expect that the 52-year-old Shorten will lead his party into power for the first time in six years.

Rod McGuirk, The Associated Press