Kevin Rudd's coup will have no discernible impact on Australia-US relations, although the White House would be hoping Australia's leadership instability is "resolved as amicably and as quickly as possible", a top US academic says.

Mr Rudd's Labor Party leadership spill victory over Julia Gillard was closely watched in Washington DC where Australia is a key partner in US President Barack Obama's strategy of re-focusing America's attention on the Asia-Pacific.

"Mr Rudd is well regarded in Washington," Dr Alan C. Tidwell, director of the Centre for Australian and New Zealand Studies at Georgetown University, told AAP.

"He has numerous friends and contacts developed not only when he was leader of the opposition but during his first tenure as prime minister and later when he was foreign minister."

Dr Tidwell added the White House and the US State Department also have good relationships with Ms Gillard and Opposition Leader Tony Abbott.

"They know Mr Rudd from years previous, have a strong and up until last night very close relationship with Ms Gillard and know Mr Abbott well from his time in the Howard cabinet," Dr Tidwell said.

"Mr Abbott participated in a Department of State sponsored tour through the US some years ago. There is nothing lacking in relationships on anybody's part.

"What matters to the White House and State Department is the substance of the relationship, not the personalities.

"Both the Coalition and the ALP support a strong Australian-American alliance, predicated on the shared interests and democratic principles espoused by both countries.

"Of course, any time a major ally goes through a period of leadership instability, both the White House and State Department would likely hope for that instability to be resolved as amicably and as quickly as possible."


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