LABOR infrastructure spokesman Anthony Albanese is set to lead the party in opposition, after Chris Bowen confirmed he would not run.
Mr Bowen said while he had strong support in caucus, Mr Albanese was better placed to galvanise voters behind Labor.
“It’s also clear to me – I’m a realist – that Albo would win the rank and file, for good reason – he’s a popular character … Hence I have reached the view that it would be unlikely for me to win the ballot,” Mr Bowen said.
Queensland Jim Chalmers is likely to Mr Albanese’s deputy, however at the time of publication he was yet to rule himself out from contesting the leadership.
A bigger role for Mr Chalmers would be a nod to both generational change and boosting the party’s credentials in a state where Labor took significant electoral punishment.
Mr Albanese was a strong player in the logistics sector and led telling attacks on the government over its handling of the Inland Rail project.