Anthony Albanese will be sworn in as prime minister by the governor-general on Monday as he prepares to govern in what is likely to be a much more diverse parliament than last.
Projections for the size of the Labor caucus after Saturday’s election range from 72 to 76, the threshold needed to govern without having to negotiate with the newly expanded crossbench.
The Election Commission’s vote count will continue this week in tight races as the prime minister-elect heads to a meeting of Quad Nation leaders in Tokyo accompanied by his new foreign minister Penny Wong.
Labor Deputy Leader Richard Marles, Treasurer Jim Chalmers and Finance Minister Katy Gallagher will also be sworn in on Monday.
First MPs spent most of the day being briefed by their ministerial secretaries on the challenges ahead.
Mr Marles was tight-lipped on Sunday about his portfolio in the new Labor government.
Mr Albanese will decide his remaining bench after returning from the Quad when more results should be clear.
Among the first to be chosen will be the now vacant home affairs portfolio following the upset victory of a popular local independent candidate in Sydney’s multicultural Fowler seat over high-profile Labor candidate Kristina Keneally.
Ms Keneally conceded defeat on Sunday, congratulating Dai Le on her win at Fowler, and Mr Albanese on his over Scott Morrison.
Moderate Liberal faction leader Simon Birmingham called the marriage equality debate a “turning point” and the 2019 loss of former Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s former Warringah seat as an unheeded warning. The party was “now paying the price”, he said.
“You can go back to the same-sex marriage debate that dragged on unnecessarily, but it should have been resolved by a simple vote of conscience,” the senator said. Insiders.
Another turning point was the climate cuts in the energy sector, he said, where the Liberal Party could have locked down a policy “and put some of these issues behind us” with some bipartisanship.
The failure to uphold liberal values and settle the climate wars sooner “has caused a major price tag on the trail.”
Peter Dutton, the outgoing defense minister and Scott Morrison’s inside caucus rival for three years, is the heir apparent to the Liberal leadership but has many detractors.
The diminished moderate faction of the party wants someone who can bring more women into the fold.
Senator Birmingham was not ready to say who he would seek to take over as party leader.
But whoever raises their hand must have a clear idea of how to rebuild the party in the areas it lost on Saturday, he said, including supporting women in parliament.
Meanwhile, the Prime Minister-elect and his partner Jodie Haydon returned to Marrickville for a coffee break on Sunday morning, where they were joined by new Reid Labor MP Sally Sitou.
Ms Sitou snatched the seat from Liberal Fiona Martin, who appeared to confuse her with her Asian-Australian Labor colleague Tu Le during the campaign.
Ms Sitou would not be drawn to the failure of Labor candidate Kristina Keneally, parachuted into Fowler’s multicultural Sydney headquarters, but said her own victory proved that voters want politicians who “reflect the community”.
“There was a moment when I was standing at Burwood station, and a young woman came up to me and said she was of Lao descent and she was incredibly proud to be able to vote for me” , she told reporters.
“That’s when I realized my candidacy was something special, and maybe Reid voters thought so too.”
Mr Marles said it was ‘too early’ to say whether the loss of Fowler was the end of Ms Keneally’s political career but Labor would ‘learn the lessons’.
Ms Keneally conceded defeat on Sunday, congratulating independent candidate Dai Le on her win over Fowler, and Mr Albanese on hers over Scott Morrison.
The Election Commission’s vote count will continue this week in tight races as the prime minister-elect heads to a meeting of four-nation leaders in Tokyo, accompanied by his new foreign minister Penny Wong.