News

Rudd has "Buckley's" of retaking leadership: Tony Windsor

CHIEF government whip Joel Fitzgibbon says Labor powerbrokers are not counting numbers despite heightening leadership speculation in Canberra.

But in a frank interview with Fairfax on Wednesday, Mr Fitzgibbon conceded nervous caucus members were talking about the leadership and Labor's electoral fortunes.

"It would be silly to tell people watching your program there's nothing going on," Mr Fitzgibbon told Breaking Politics host Tim Lester.

"Obviously, internally, people are looking at the polls and they're expressing concerns about the future of the government and, indeed, the party and you'll get conversations and those conversations are, unfortunately, making their way into the media.

"We should keep them internal."

Mr Fitzgibbon said Labor's poor showing in just about every opinion poll was causing "unrest" in the caucus, particularly among MPs in marginal seats.

But he said it was nothing more than speculation at this stage, and had seen nothing that would suggest there was going to be a change of leadership this week.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Kevin Rudd were noticeable absentees at a breakfast function in Parliament House this morning.

Indigenous Employment Minister Julie Collins apologised for Ms Gillard's no-show at the Generation One event, saying she had been "delayed".

A spokesman for Mr Rudd told APN Newsdesk he had decided on Tuesday not to attend.

"Our office advised the organisers yesterday that Mr Rudd would no longer be attending as he wanted to ensure the focus was, appropriately, on the great work that Generation One are doing," the spokesman said.

"Mr Rudd is meeting with Mr Forrest to discuss Generation One today."

Ms Gillard's office told News Limited she had planned to "pop in" but it had become "too busy".

Meanwhile, key independent Tony Windsor said Labor risked losing his support if dumped Ms Gillard as leader.

Mr Windsor and fellow independent Rob Oakeshott helped Ms Gillard form government in the wake of the 2010 election by guaranteeing confidence and supply.

"The document is not transferable," Mr Windsor told Sky News.

He said the PM had succeeded in maintaining the Parliament and providing stable government.

"If the Labor Party don't think she's done that and want to make their changes they're quite entitled to do that. But they can't expect me to be some sort of fellow traveller while they work out their stability and instability issues."

He predicted Mr Rudd, who was unceremoniously dumped as Labor leader in June 2010, had "Buckley's" of retaking the leadership.

Topics:  australian labor party, federal election 2013, joel fitzgibbon, julia gillard, kevin rudd, labor


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Councillors’ election promise to deliver CBD project questioned

DOUBT: Andrew Antoniolli, Paul Pisasale and Paul Tully announce the lagoon project in February.

Councillors’ election promise to deliver CBD project questioned

Images of our shameful past

FOUND: Wade Thompson and Henry Thompson Jr at the Deebing Creek Mission Cemetery.

Images of our shameful past

Show out to deliver the thrills

The Safari Zoo is expected to be a big attraction for the kids.

Show out to deliver the thrills s

Latest deals and offers

Greyhound trainer brought possums to use as live bait

A FORMER leading greyhound trainer has escaped serving actual time behind bars for his role in sickening live baiting practices.

BREAKING: Police say man not armed, still on the run

MAN HUNT: Police are patrolling the West Ipswich area looking for an armed man.

Police said the search began with a stolen car being found.

How to be a farmer when you're allergic to your crop

Rob Hutchings from Freshwater Crayfish Traders at Tarome.

VIDEO: Crayfish invasion hits the Scenic Rim.

UPDTATE: Mum hopes $1000 is enough for Down syndrome boy

Peak Crossing State School will apply for funding to keep Nixon in Prep.

VIDEO: Department of Education offer additional funding to Nixon

Elderly man beaten with baseball bat

Police generic, crime scene.  Photo Tessa Mapstone / South Burnett Times

Police reveal victim in hospital after altercation with robber

“My dog ate my false teeth!”

DR TOOTHLESS: Goodna greyhound trainer Kerion Butler had his false teeth eaten by his prize dog Eleazar, so he’s superglued some old army-issue dentures together (inset) until he can afford some new ones.

“So that is how I lost my teeth"

Learn to empower business with guest speaker

Damian Morgan will exchange ideas with some of Ipswich's business leaders during a series of free seminars he will be holding at the Ipswich Civic Centre on Wednesday June 15.

Damian Morgan to speak at business leaders seminar

Justice Lucy McCallum

Justice Lucy McCallum

Justice Lucy McCallum says she reduced Oliver Curtis's sentence due to comments...

Perisher has 50cm of snow

Resort to open after 50cm of snow.

Smiggin Holes and Blue Cow to open after 50cm of snaow falls in Perisher valley.

F1 pit stop in 1.92 seconds

Williams team make 1.92 second pit stop.

Williams Formula 1 team change all four tyres in equal fastest time ever.

Is this state’s cheapest house?

BARGAIN BUY: Is this North Bundaberg property the cheapest home in Queensland?

Becoming a real estate mogul is all about risk and reward

Rockhampton property in a lull, but a change is coming

Rockhampton's housing market in "pre-election mode"