Statement on the 2010 ALP National Review
Period of Service: 24/06/2010 to 27/06/2013
Release Date: 18/02/2011
Release Type: Media Release
Transcript ID: 17688
I welcome the 2010 ALP National Review Report which was released today by the Australian Labor Party National Executive.
The review was conducted at my request and covers an assessment of the Labor Party's performance over the past three years, including in last year's election campaign.
I would like to thank Senator John Faulkner, former Premier of Victoria Steve Bracks and former Premier of NSW Bob Carr for conducting such a widespread and inclusive review. John, Steve and Bob have brought to the task their great love for and loyalty to the Labor Party combined with a wealth of experience and an insightful approach.
The report contains many valuable reflections and recommendations for the Labor Party and its future.
The Labor Party will consider these recommendations and respond through the Party's processes.
As Prime Minister and Federal Labor Leader, I today outline the principles which should govern the Party's response as it is shaped in the coming months.
1. ALP members are the future of the Party.
For the ALP to remain a party of strength we must tap into the boundless idealism and energy of our members, of our supporters, and of the wider community.
We must be a broad based party that is engaged with the Australian community. We must build capacity in our members and in our organisation.
2. We must continue to be a party of ideas and a party of government.
Being a party of robust debates is a sign of strength, not weakness.
There must be a genuine contest of ideas and arguments within the Party but we must never lose sight of the fact that the only way to turn the ideas that mean so much to us into a reality is to win government.
3. The only political strategy that counts in the end is making a difference to people's lives.
Any discussion of political strategy must begin and end with that recognition.
People expect change from their political leaders. They expect us to make a difference in their lives, to change this country for the better. That is what they will judge us by.
That means ensuring that the ALP continues to drive change so that it benefits all Australians.
It means ensuring that we deliver on both economic and social reform, and that when we do, we never lose sight of the importance of building a society which fairly distributes opportunity. Building opportunity, enabling social mobility and shaping the future is the core mission of the Labor Party.
4. There are matters that must be determined by the Parliamentary Leader.
While the Party and the Government must work together, there are matters that I believe are ultimately the decision of the Parliamentary Leader.
As Labor Leader, I will insist on the right to freely choose the Executive of the Federal Parliamentary Labor Party. I have chosen my team of Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries and I will continue to do so.
I will also continue to determine the best structure for my office to support me and the Government.
5. There are matters that must be determined by the Parliamentary Party.
While the Party sets the platform, the Government must determine its policies. This is the case now and this must continue.
These are appropriate principles in approaching this report and I hope that the Labor Party - from the Party President down to our newest grassroots member - takes part in what will be a constructive debate.
That is what has always characterised our Party.
Finally, I recognise that more than anything else people expect the Government to govern.
However important the many recommendations in this report are, my main focus this year will remain:
* rebuilding disaster stricken communities;
* building opportunity through the Government's education and participation reforms;
* shaping the future by pricing carbon, rolling out the NBN, and delivering a better and sustainable health care system; and
* seeing our mission through in Afghanistan.