Chalmers can’t lose, even if he loses
QUEENSLAND federal Labor MP Jim Chalmers is likely to run against Anthony Albanese for the party leadership, and he's likely to lose. But it will be a win for both of them, writes Renee Viellaris.
He will be creamed by the rank-and-file and Caucus, but for Chalmers it will be a tactical win.
It is also a tactical win for Albo, who wants a competitor because it guarantees him media exposure while he and another contender battle it out, showing the country his values.
Albo's press conference yesterday at 5pm said nothing and said everything. He did not endorse anyone as his deputy.
Running against Albo would also be a tactical win for Chalmers, because it will make him more competitive for the deputy position, which will only be determined by the party's Right faction, if Albo, the loved hero of the Left, wins.
Despite being Labor's finance spokesman, Chalmers does not have a huge profile across the country.
He will also claim some credibility as a Queenslander. That is a bit hollow today, given Labor holds just six seats out of 30 in the state since the slapdown voters gave the ALP in Saturday's election.
The young gun, and father of three, will face headwinds.
He co-wrote some of Labor's repudiated economic messages - some say he even tried to go further on franking credits.
He definitely threw around the "top end of town" mantra that spectacularly backfired on Labor.
But he does not own the failure to the extent that shadow treasurer Chris Bowen does.
Chalmers has the economic stamina that surpasses Albo.
Chalmers also has a good relationship with Labor's Penny Wong, a Left factional warrior.
It also lays the platform for Wong to remain as leader of the Opposition in the Senate, and for Kristina Keneally to become manager of Opposition business in the Senate - ticking off on gender leadership.