Mr Rudd will have to deal with his own divided party before he can take on Coalition Leader Tony Abbott and quickly moving to an election earlier than the one scheduled on September 14, possibly in early August.
And he will have to quickly show the rest of the party how he intends to steer Labor away from a “course for catastrophic defeat”.
Those expected to quit the front bench rather than become Rudd ministers include Trade Minister Craig Emerson and Schools Minister Peter Garrett.
The departure of ministers who have become household names will come in addition to the removal of Labor’s second incumbent Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, in three years. Former minister Chris Bowen is likely to be the next Treasurer.
Others who might stand down could include Immigration Minister Brendan O’Connor and Sports Minister Kate Lundy, who both tweeted support for Ms Gillard before the ballot.
Mr Rudd acknowledged the likelihood of senior ministers standing down: “For those who believe they cannot serve, I wish them well, thank them for their service.”
The man who has been accused of plotting revenge on Ms Gillard for three years pledged: “No retributions, no paybacks, none of that stuff. It’s pointless. It’s old politics.”
Mr Rudd then will have to face a Coalition campaign based on the accusation he went back on his word never to go for the leadership again.
The first attacks can be expected in Parliament today with the Coalition pointing to Mr Rudd’s March 22 statement “there are no circumstances whatsoever under which I’d return to the leadership in future”.
He has started explaining his backflip by arguing he was answering the call of “tens of thousands of ordinary Australians, members of the Australian public, who have been asking me to do this for a very long time”.
“And it’s those voices, the voices of the Australian people, it’s those voices that have had a huge effect on me,” he said.
Mr Rudd also said “many, many MPs have requested me for a long, long time to contest the leadership of the party because of the parlous circumstances we now face”.
“I don’t seek to fudge the fact that I have changed my position. I’ve simply given you the reasons today why I have done so,” he said.
Mr Rudd has so far not given policy detail apart from saying he would provide “strong, proven, national economic leadership for the end of the decade-long China resources boom”.
He also suggested he would sell policies better than Ms Gillard, saying voters believed they did not have “a real choice”.
Mr Rudd has not yet committed in detail to defeating Mr Abbott at the election but has argued he could moderate the defeat Labor faces.Source: Herald Sun – Which ministers will survive the Rudd ascendancy?
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- Rudd wins 57 to 45: Gillard defeated in ballot (theage.com.au)
- Bill Shorten says backing Rudd (bigpondnews.com)
- Rudd and Gillard battle for leadership (bigpondnews.com)
- Leadership Ballot Called, Rudd to Contest (beaudreux.com)
- Gillard v Rudd: ALP leadership spill liveblog (crikey.com.au)
- Six scenarios: what could happen? (smh.com.au)
- The six scenarios: what could happen? (canberratimes.com.au)
- Australian PM faces new coup (stuff.co.nz)
- Rudd goes for Gillard: MPs move to oust Prime Minister (smh.com.au)
- Kevin Rudd tipped to resume as Australia’s Prime Minister (craighill.net)
- Major Australian newspaper calls for Prime Minister to resign (craighill.net)