Tonight I am resigning my Ministerial positions and will not contest the 2013 Federal Election.
It has been a wonderful privilege to have been a Cabinet Minister in the Gillard Labor Government.
Julia Gillard has been a great reforming Prime Minister in the great Labor tradition. I owe her a big debt of gratitude for putting her confidence in me and entrusting me with responsibilities that are so important to Australia's future.
Julia Gillard has shown enormous courage in implementing landmark Labor reforms that will be remembered for generations to come. They include putting a price on carbon, opening the gates of our universities to disadvantaged Australians, introducing the National Disability Insurance Scheme and deepening Australia's engagement with Asia, as set out in the White Paper on Australia in the Asian Century.
I hope Julia's needs-based policy for our schools endures so that every child can receive a quality education.
I wish Kevin Rudd and his team all the very best, and I will do whatever I can to ensure the re-election of the Labor Government.
To the people of Rankin, thank you for the trust you have placed in me for five Parliamentary terms. I hope I have served you well and I will continue working for you until the writs for the Federal Election are issued.
Media contacts: Minister's office 02 6277 7420