News National Bill Shorten may switch seats after redistribution

Bill Shorten may switch seats after redistribution

Bill Shorten
Opposition leader Bill Shorten may change his parliamentary seat. Photo: AAP
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Bill Shorten is choosing which of his voters to stick with after the electoral commission proposed to cut his seat in half.

The federal Labor leader is considering whether to stay in Maribyrnong or move to the newly-created seat of Fraser, which takes in part of his old electorate.

“[They] have in their wisdom cut my seat in half,” Mr Shorten told reporters in Perth.

Half of my voters are in one seat, half of them are in the other.

“I’ll certainly be running at the next election, I’ll certainly be running in the northwest suburbs of Melbourne, and I look forward to discussions in submissions to the electoral commission.”

The proposed new boundaries for Maribyrnong will include more voters from the Green-voting seat of Melbourne, making it more marginal

Mr Shorten won it with a solid 12.3 per cent margin in 2016.

The final decision on the electoral boundary will be announced by July, after consideration of submissions.

Labor reportedly wants Mr Shorten to spend more time campaigning in marginal seats rather than having to defend his own.

“I’m interested in making sure Labor gets more votes everywhere,” Mr Shorten told 6PR radio.

But some Labor MPs said there was no need for Mr Shorten to switch to a safer seat and that he could comfortably win despite the boundary redistribution.

Once Mr Shorten chooses his seat, whichever seat is left over will go to the new Industrial Left faction.

Victorian state Labor MP Jane Garrett was instrumental in bringing the Industrial Left faction together and would be a front runner for the new federal seat if she chose to run.