Ousted prime minister Julia Gillard says she won’t attend Labor’s campaign launch because she doesn’t want to distract from her successor’s ‘powerful message’.
In a statement released late on Sunday, Ms Gillard explained her decision to stay out of the political limelight next weekend.
‘I have respectfully decided not to be present at next Sunday’s campaign launch because I simply do not want to distract in any way from Kevin Rudd’s powerful message to the Australian people,’ she said.
‘I stand with all those throughout our party, and with our great candidates, in voicing my fervent hope for a decisive Labor victory on September 7.’
Earlier on Sunday, Mr Rudd said he respected the work Ms Gillard had done while in the top job.
‘She has made great contributions, they should be respected,’ he told reporters.
Ms Gillard, who is retiring from parliament at this election, has been absent from Labor’s election campaign in 2013.