Speaking from the Unity Hall Hotel in Balmain, the birthplace of the Labor party, Albanese told reporters he had no criticism of Shorten as Labor leader, but did admit that Saturday night was a “devastating result for the Australian Labor party”.
Although Albanese admitted that Australia now has a “re-elected government” in the form of the Coalition, he said that it is one which will “continue to be divided”.
“It hasn’t put forward a positive agenda for this term, and therefore it is difficult to see how it will govern in the national interest,” he said.
Albanese, who drew attention to his working class roots as a public housing boy from Camperdown, said that he believes he has a responsibility to put himself forward as “the best person to lead Labor back into government”.
“We’ve lost three elections in a row,” Albanese continued.
“That has an impact on those Australians who rely upon us to improve their education, to look after their health care, to build public transport infrastructure.”
Albanese also saluted voters in outer metropolitan areas and the regions, places where Labor significantly underperformed on Saturday.
He pointed out that wages are not keeping up with inflation and people are unable to meet the basic essentials for their families.
He said that Labor needs to articulate an agenda for economic growth, not just talk about how it was prepared to redistribute wealth, as the 2019 election campaign had focused on.
Neighbouring electorate MP Tanya Plibersek, Member for Sydney, will also confirm her candidacy for Labor leadership today, after indicating early on Sunday morning that she was a likely contender for the leadership.
Both Albanese and Plibersek are from the left faction of the Labor party.
Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen, the man behind Shorten’s tax plan to curb negative gearing, is also considering running for leadership.
He is a representative of the right faction of the Labor party.
Anthony Albanese recently made headlines after saying that “groupthink” was a contributing factor to the Greens vehement opposition to the Adani coalmine.
“Not everyone thinks the same on any particular issue, including on this," he pointed out.
An Irish-Italo-Australian who grew up in a single mother family, Albanese was narrowly defeated in the 2013 Labor leadership contest by Bill Shorten, who failed to lead the Labor party to victory over the weekend after six years in the top job.