Michael Daley has decided not to contest a ballot for the leadership of the New South Wales Labor Party, just a day after insisting he wanted to remain in the job.
Mr Daley had been under immense pressure not to nominate for the leadership follow the party’s poor showing in Saturday’s State election.
He’s been personally blamed for Labor’s failure to make an impact following stumbles during a people’s forum and a leaked video criticising Asian migrants.
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Labor picked up just two seats at the election, securing Coogee and Lismore, despite earlier polls having the Opposition neck-and-neck with the Coalition.
Under ALP Caucus rules, the leadership is automatically spilled after an election loss, however party bosses decided on Monday to delay the ballot until after the Federal election.
Mr Daley stood aside as leader on Monday afternoon but vowed to put his hand up for the leadership when nominations are called.
However just 24 hours later, Mr Daley has announced he will not seek the job again.
In a statement, Mr Daley said he did not want to be a distraction for the federal campaign and that after the State election loss, he wanted the NSW Party to have clear air for the selection of a new leader.
“I have always put the interests of the party first and in making this decision, continue to do so.”
“I intend to remain the Member for Maroubra. I have spoken to the Interim Leader Penny Sharpe and have advised her that I will be taking leave over the next few weeks to spend time with my family.”
The race for the leadership is now expected to be a battle between Shadow Transport Spokesperson Jodi McKay and Shadow Water Spokesperson Chris Minns.