Tanya Plibersek
Tanya Plibersek

Shock as Plibersek pulls out of leadership race

TANYA Plibersek has opted not to run for the Labor leadership.

The Deputy Labor leader announced her decision today, saying she had support from across the party to be elected leader but "now is not my time".

"At this point, I cannot reconcile the important responsibilities I have to my family with the additional responsibilities of the Labor leadership," Ms Plibersek said.

"I know some people will be disappointed with this decision. I intend to continue as deputy leader until the leadership is determined."

Ms Plibersek said Saturday's election was "a blow for Labor supporters" and that the party needed to "take a serious look" at its policies.

But she backed Bill Shorten's efforts, saying: "Bill unified Labor and could not have worked harder to get us across the line."

The shock move came just a day after Mr Shorten endorsed her for the top job.

Scott Morrison is on track for majority government and has taken the former blue ribbon Liberal seat of Wentworth back after Independent Dr Kerryn Phelps conceded defeat to Dave Sharma.

The Coalition currently has 75 seats in the lower house and could potentially pick up two or three more.

Several seats are still too close to call but the Melbourne seat of Chisholm has started to swing in the Liberals' favour, along with the South Australian seat of Boothby.

The Coalition needs 76 seats to win an outright majority or 77 seats to have a majority and one of their own MPs as the Speaker.

It comes as the PM puts tax cuts and ministry changes on top of his agenda.



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