Harry Jenkins, the Labor member for Scullin and former Speaker of the House of Representatives, has announced that he will retire from parliament at the next election.
Jenkins has represented Scullin since 1986 and is currently the longest-serving Labor member. He succeeded his father, Dr. Harry Jenkins, in the electorate which has been represented by the Jenkins family since 1969.
Following the election of the Rudd government, Jenkins served as Speaker of the House from February 2008 until November 24, 2011. His resignation allowed the government to install Peter Slipper as Speaker and increase its majority on the floor of the House.
Scullin is in Melbourne’s north-east suburbs. It covers the suburbs of Bundoora, Diamond Creek, Plenty, Thomastown, Lalor, Epping, Mill Park, South Morang, Watsonia North and Yarrambat.
At the 2010 election, Jenkins retained Scullin with a 1.40% swing towards the ALP, 62.12% of the primary vote and 70.85% of the two-party-preferred vote.
Jenkins is the third ALP member of the House to announce retirement, joining Sharon Grierson, the member for Newcastle, and Steve Gibbons, the member for Bendigo.
Newspaper reports suggest that Slater and Gordon lawyer Andrew Giles will be endorsed by the Victorian Left faction as the new candidate for Scullin.
Jenkins gave this interview to Leigh Sales on the ABC’s 7.30.