Rudd admits 2010 leadership leak 'possibly' his own doing

Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd reveals he could have leaked information about the infamous 2010 leadership coup.
Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd reveals he could have leaked information about the infamous 2010 leadership coup. Cathy Adams

FORMER Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has all but confirmed he was behind the damaging leak that revealed details of a deal he struck with Julia Gillard to hand over the leadership.

The deal was stuck the night before Ms Gillard launched a 2010 leadership coup that resulted in Mr Rudd being toppled from the top job.

It is understood the two agreed at the time they would keep the details of their conversation secret.

But veteran political reporter Laurie Oakes dropped a bombshell just weeks into Ms Gillard's leadership when he put to her at a National Press Club function in Canberra that an unnamed source had told him Mr Rudd had offered to voluntarily hand over the leadership closer to the election if the polls were against him.

Ms Gillard refused to confirm or deny the claim but either way the damage had been done.

The details were aired last night in the final instalment of the ABC documentary The Killing Season that gave an insider account of Labor's messy leadership battles.

Mr Rudd was asked directly whether he was the source of the leak in last night's program.

"It is entirely possible, but just as it is possible that I spoke to a whole bunch of other journalists about it," he said.

"Julia Gillard marches in and launches a leadership coup and then suddenly there is supposed to be some veil of total secrecy surrounding a conversation with me?"

The documentary also gave an intimate account of when Ms Gillard learnt that then-factional boss Bill Shorten was preparing to throw his support behind Mr Rudd in the 2013 leadership showdown.

"I understood he was going to make a, you know, different decision," she said.

Now Opposition Leader, Bill Shorten refused to take part in the program.

Topics:  abc editors picks julia gillard kevin rudd labor

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