Kevin Rudd.
Kevin Rudd. Blainey Woodham

AWU leader supports Rudd's reforms

FACTIONAL heavyweights, including Australian Workers' Union leader Paul Howes, have backed Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's Labor Party reforms aimed at bringing stability around leadership issues.

Mr Rudd announced the reforms, which would prevent the kind of leadership spill he used to take back his old job, on Monday night.

The reforms would include an equal weighting given to the parliamentary caucus and the party membership in any party leadership vote.

Mr Howes on Tuesday told Channel Seven he supported the reforms, characterising them as smart, necessary and important.

The union leader, a key player in the ousting of Mr Rudd in 2010, has now fallen in behind the new parliament leader.

"I think that electing the leader through a different mechanism is something that has to happen," he told the television network.

Mr Howes' comment came on the same day Education Minister Bill Shorten told ABC Radio it was time to modernise the party.

Mr Shorten was a key player in both the 2010 change of leadership to Julia Gillard, and the return of Mr Rudd to the prime ministership a fortnight ago.

He said the party had learnt it needed to be "very transparent" about party stability and the leadership, coming after years of internal divisions.

"I think it's also important that for people who are interested in politics that there is a meaning to them getting involved in a political party," Mr Shorten said.

"Being able to have a say in terms of the leadership of the political party I think means to a lot of people who thought why would they bother getting involved in politics?"


Qld borders reopen to all of NSW in shock decision

Premium Content Qld borders reopen to all of NSW in shock decision

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk to open Qld borders to Greater Sydney within days

‘Excruciatingly painful’: Scorpion-like fish no urban myth

Premium Content ‘Excruciatingly painful’: Scorpion-like fish no urban myth

This spiky little creature lives in freshwater waterways

WHIP IT: Rappville set to host world whip cracking champ

Premium Content WHIP IT: Rappville set to host world whip cracking champ

Nathan “Whippy” Griggs mixes death defying whip tricks with dry Aussie humour.