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Bill Shorten Elected ALP Leader

Bill Shorten has been elected leader of the A.L.P.

The result has just been announced, following a Caucus meeting in Canberra.

Shorten won 55 votes to 31 in the Caucus ballot (63.95%) and 40.08% of the membership vote, an overall win of 52.02%.

Shorten polled 12,196 membership votes to Albanese’s 18,230. The ALP says the turnout of 39,426 party members was 74% of those eligible.

ALP email to members and supporters – CLICK TO ENLARGE


The leadership election is the first time the party’s rank-and-file members have been given a vote. The membership vote has been weighted at 50% with the Caucus vote also worth 50%.

Shorten is the 20th leader of the party since Federation in 1901. He entered parliament at the 2007 election as the member for Maribrynong in Melbourne. Albanese has been the member for the Sydney electorate of Grayndler since 1996.

The ALP’s interim leader, Chris Bowen, the Returning Officer, Chris Hayes, and the party’s National President, Jenny McAllister, officially announced the result.

  • Listen to McAllister, Bowen and Hayes (19m)



Shorten’s victory in the Caucus is significant. His 55 votes is greater than the Right faction’s parliamentary membership. The overall result means that the ALP has the best of both worlds as a result: the membership has had a vote but the person overwhelmingly preferred by the parliamentary party has been elected, undercutting any criticism from the Abbott government.

Former prime minister Julia Gillard has tweeted her congratulations to Shorten and Albanese:

History suggests that Bill Shorten will never become prime minister. After its defeat in 1996, the ALP lost another three elections before winning in 2007. After its defeat in 1975, the ALP lost two more elections. After its defeat in 1949, the ALP did not return to government for another 23 years and 8 elections. After losing in 1931, the ALP lost another three elections.

The last time Labor returned to office at the next election following a defeat was in 1914 when Andrew Fisher was elected to his third term as prime minister, following his defeat by Joseph Cook in 1913.

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Malcolm Farnsworth
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