Anthony Albanese will become the Labor Party’s next leader, after the only remaining contender, Jim Chalmers, pulled out of the race on Thursday.
Dr Chalmers, the Queensland-based finance spokesman, called Mr Albanese to offer his “enthusiastic support” before lunch. He had been making calls to supporters throughout the morning to see if he had the numbers to get through what would have been a five-week leadership ballot involving all party members.
“I have been genuinely surprised by the magnitude of their support and encouragement and I hope I haven’t let them down in making this decision,” Dr Chalmers said in a statement.
“There were good reasons to run. But in the end I couldn’t be assured of winning, and if I did win the extra responsibilities of leadership would make it much harder to do my bit at home while the youngest of our three little kids is only five months old.”