Byrne credits retired member
BILL Byrne is one of the few Labor Party members to be elected on the weekend and will be a shadow portfolio spokesman.
Mr Byrne won the seat against seven other candidates, beating Liberal National Party's Gavin Finch by about 10% of the primary vote, with 70.2% of votes counted.
Despite the Labor Party winning the seat after the retirement of Robert Schwarten, the results delivered a devastating blow to the party in the form of a 13.6% swing to the LNP.
As the new member for Rockhampton, Mr Byrne admitted there was a big fight ahead.
"It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know it's going to be a heck of a fight across so many portfolios," he said.
"I will endeavour to represent their (Rockhampton constituents) interests front and centre.
"I'm grateful for the confidence the Rockhampton voters have shown me."
While the rest of Queensland showed the Labor Party just how much it was no longer desired, Mr Byrne said he knew why he got over the line.
"I wouldn't have made it past the first hurdle without (retired MP) Robert Schwarten's support," he said.
"Robert Schwarten has gone to great lengths to show his support and give his assistance."
Mr Byrne yesterday admitted former premier Anna Bligh was one of the few ALP members in Brisbane that supported his campaign.
He said Mr Finch had called him to congratulate him on his win.
With 70.22% of roll counted, primary votes
ALP Bill Byrne 8496 votes
LNP Gavin Finch 6517
KAP Shane Guley 2703