— With AAP.
Tanya Plibersek has announced she will not run for the Labor leadership.
In a statement released on Monday afternoon, the current Labor deputy leader said she is grateful for the support she has received from her colleagues.
“I am overwhelmed by the confidence my colleagues, the union movement, and Labor party members have placed in me,” she said.
“But now is not my time,” she added.
“At this point, I cannot reconcile the important responsibilities I have to my family with the additional responsibilities of the Labor leadership.”
Senior frontbencher Anthony Albanese announced on Sunday he will run for the Labor leadership, with shadow treasurer Chris Bowen expressing interest too.
Shorten is said to have backed Plibersek – and Julia Gillard has also thrown her support behind the 49-year-old from Sydney, in a rare intervention into party politics from the former prime minister.
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Plibersek is the daughter of Slovenian migrants (her father worked on the Snowy Mountains Scheme) who joined the Labor Party at 15, completed degrees in communications and politics and worked for Senator Bruce Childs, a leading figure on the Left in the 1980s.
In 1991, Plibersek was studying at the University of Technology Sydney when she met fellow communications student Michael Coutts-Trotter.
Plibersek left their first date having learned two things: 1) She really liked him, and 2) He had served almost three years for drug offences in the 80s.
It’s not your usual first date conversation-starter, but Coutts-Trotter was open with Plibersek from the very beginning. He told her about his past, which included time in maximum security jails like Long Bay. He was paroled in 1988 and three years later – while still on parole, not drinking alcohol and attending narcotics anonymous – Coutts-Trotter was telling his story to the woman he would eventually marry.
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