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Rudd wrong on leadership guidelines: Fitzgibbon

Outspoken Labor backbencher Joel Fitzgibbon believes Kevin Rudd was wrong to allow rank and file members a vote on the party’s leadership.

The former Labor prime minister changed the rules to stop the revolving door of leaders at the time of the party’s last term of government.

“I think it was a mistake,” Mr Fitzgibbon told Sky News’ Sunday Agenda program.

“Arguably you can’t have too much democracy, we have to be a democratic party, we have to give the members a say, but I think that, you know, when thinking about leadership you don’t want a populist.”

Mr Fitzgibbon is still thinking about whether to stand again in his NSW seat of Hunter at the next election.

“Hunter is under pressure, the prime minister is going after it and I might be the only one that is capable of hanging on,” he said.

He also had a crack at the what Labor’s parliamentary caucus has become, saying members feel unable to express their views.

“Now if you are a backbencher, that’s your only forum and people must be able to express a view; they must be able to shout loudly about the views, interests and aspirations and challenges of their local electorates,” he said.

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