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Bill Shorten Safe As Labor As Anthony Albanese Says He Won't Challenge

Shorten is safe, for now.

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Albo told his local paper the election was like extra time in a football game and “you don’t change captains in extra time. Period.”

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“My whole career, I have been a team player and have never put myself before the Labor Party and I’m not about to start now,” Albanese said.

Technically, no one can mount a challenge until Labor officially loses the federal election.

Under the new leadership rules, introduced by Kevin Rudd in 2013, if Labor doesn't form government the position of leader is automatically spilled.

If more than one person nominates, a ballot of the parliamentary Labor Party and the broader party membership will be held to determine the outcome.

Candidates must nominate with the backing of 20% of the parliamentary party.

Rank and file members get a 50 per cent say in the choosing the leader of the party, while elected federal MPs also get a 50 per cent say.

The only way to then remove the leader would be for 60% of Labor caucus members to sign a petition requesting a new election.

If there is a leadership spill, a 30-day contest is held to determine the leader, so we may not have a result until late August.

Members of both the left and the right in the Labor Party are lining up to declare Bill Shorten has their full support to remain leader of the party.

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BuzzFeed News couldn't find a single person from either side that would commit to voting for someone other than Shorten in a future leadership spill.

Deputy leader Tanya Plibersek has ruled out putting her hand up for the leadership on Radio National on Monday and she can’t see anyone else having a claim on Labor’s leadership.

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"This is really a fantastic result for Bill. He's led a united team. We have put out a very positive policy agenda. We've come closer than anybody ever imagined. On top of the fact, obviously, we saw off Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey some time ago, we have now seen off another Liberal Prime Minister.

"I think Bill's achievement speaks for itself. He has done a great job. I'm sure everyone will be delighted to support him and show that they are so proud of him for the job he's done," she said.

Labor MPs Stephen Conroy, Michelle Rowland, Nick Champion and Brendan O'Connor have also publicly backed Shorten.

Alice Workman is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Canberra.

Contact Alice Workman at

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