News

Local MPs back Rudd

All Smiles: PM Kevin Rudd in August 2009 at Lismore Base Hospital where his  All Blacks tie became center of attention.
All Smiles: PM Kevin Rudd in August 2009 at Lismore Base Hospital where his All Blacks tie became center of attention. Jacklyn Wagner

PAGE MP Janelle Saffin has rejected Prime Minister Julia Gillard's attack on Kevin Rudd's time as Labor leader.

Ms Saffin, along with Richmond MP Justine Elliot, who was Minister for Ageing under Mr Rudd, yesterday both said they would support the former Prime Minister in a leadership ballot.

However, Ms Saffin warned it was time for Labor MPs to stop publicly discussing the issue and handing the Opposition ammunition.

During a press conference to announce the Labor leadership would be put to a ballot on Monday morning, Ms Gillard variously described Labor under Mr Rudd as having been "chaotic", "paralysed", and "dysfunctional".

Ms Gillard's comments followed criticism and invective from several senior cabinet ministers, among them Attorney-General Nicola Roxon, Treasurer and Deputy Prime Minister Wayne Swan, Regional Development Minister Simon Crean, Health Minister Tanya Plibersek, Communications Minister Stephen Conroy and Trade Minister Craig Emerson.

However, Ms Saffin disagreed with the Prime Minister.

"I didn't see it like that," she said.

"My view is the less they (Labor MPs) say on any side ... the better."

Ms Saffin said the people responsible were only now starting to tell the story behind their decision, when they should have done it at the time.

Ms Saffin and Ms Elliot both said people in their electorates were telling them they wanted Mr Rudd back in the driver's seat.

"It's clear people across Page - not all of them but most - overwhelmingly they still support him and see Kevin Rudd as a leader and the best person to lead us into an election," Ms Saffin said.

"People have been saying that to me every day since it happened (Mr Rudd's dumping) in 2010 and I'm out everywhere in the electorate doing things."

It was a similar story in Richmond.

"Locals have been telling me that they want Kevin Rudd to lead the Labor Party," Ms Elliot said in a statement.

"I believe that Kevin Rudd is the best person to lead the Labor Party and I will be voting for him if he is a candidate in Monday's ballot."

Other supporters for Mr Rudd began emerging among Government ranks yesterday. However, Ms Gillard and her supporters have said she is expected to win Monday's ballot easily.

Ms Gillard said if she did lose the vote she would renounce all claim on the leadership and go to the backbench and called on Mr Rudd to make the same commitment.

Ms Saffin said that was something for Mr Rudd to decide.

Topics:  australian labor party, julia gillard, kevin rudd



PHOTOS: Teen attacked by shark on Ballina beach

Multiple people attended the scene at Lighthouse Beach where a shark attack took place around 9:30 on Monday morning. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star

Photos from the scene of the attack

'Bungled' shark management plan failed the community: Labor

Plans for shark barriers on the North Coast have been abandoned.

"Surfers are still being put at risk because of government inaction"

Encounters on stage at Lennox Head

COMING SOON: Dancers Elizabeth Venn and Tess Eckert are part of Encounters, the upcoming performance by SPRUNG!! Integrated Dance Theatre Inc.

By Sprung!! Dance Theatre Inc

Local Partners

Angelina is blocking calls from Brad Pritt

Angelina Jolie has reportedly blocked Brad Pitt's number.

Encounters on stage at Lennox Head

COMING SOON: Dancers Elizabeth Venn and Tess Eckert are part of Encounters, the upcoming performance by SPRUNG!! Integrated Dance Theatre Inc.

By Sprung!! Dance Theatre Inc

Apocalyptica 'seek and destroy' sceptics with 'master' set

Apocalyptica play Max Watts in Brisbane on their Shadowmaker Tour.

Review of final show of Apocalyptica's tour

Rebecca Hall doesn't own a TV

Newspapers, yes. Television, not so much

Jaime King 'terrified' by son's heart surgery

Jamie King was "terrified" when her son went in for heart surgery.

John Mayer's advice for Shawn Mendes

Shawn Mendes has revealed John Mayer gave him advice

Buyers forking out millions

Owners benefiting from undersupplied Northern Rivers market

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

Couple build their own 'tiny house' for $45k

Holly Bowen and Oli Bucher built their "tiny house" themselves, only hiring a plumber and an electrician. Photo/supplied

The house, which is built on a trailer and can be towed.

Sunshine Beach property breaks real estate record

The property overlooks Sunshine Beach, as the backyard lawn meets the sand.

Sunshine Beach mansion sale smashes real estate record

New $33 million development planned for Ballina Shire

The site of a proposed seniors living development at Skennars Head.

Plans include 211 homes, clubhouse and recreational facilities

SOLD: Historic hotel finds new owner

Post Office Hotel Grafton

Photo Adam Hourigan / The Daily Examiner

Pub in new hands and heading in a brand new direction