8 Jul 2016

Bill Shorten's leadership to be reaffirmed

9:19 am on 8 July 2016

Australian election - Labor MPs and senators meet today to reaffirm Bill Shorten's leadership, as counting continues in the federal election.

On the night, Bill Shorten told his supporters they may not know the final result - but Labor was back.

Bill Shorten Photo: AFP

The Coalition is leading Labor by 73 seats to 66, with six seats still in doubt.

Labor still leads in five of the remaining six seats but the Coalition remains confident that it will be able to form a majority government.

Under party rules, if Labor loses an election there is an automatic leadership ballot.

Despite the lack of a final result, Mr Shorten will be renominated as leader at a special caucus in Canberra today.

He is expected to be the only candidate, but under the party's rules the nomination could take seven days to be finalised.

One of the newly elected MPs, Linda Burney, said the process would show Labor was united behind Mr Shorten.

"It's a pre-emptive message to the Australian community that Labor has its act together, " Ms Burney told the ABC.

Ms Burney won the seat of Barton in New South Wales, and is the first Aboriginal woman elected to the House of Representatives.

She said today's meeting would be "historic" as she joined WA Senator Pat Dodson and NT Senator-elect Malarndirri McCarthy in the Labor caucus.

"Labor did so well in this election, the thrill of having so many new members, three Aboriginal people in the caucus is historic," Ms Burney said.


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