Wayne Swan won’t say whether or not he intends to contest the next federal election, but one thing is for sure, you ain’t seen the last of him.
One thing seems sure, Wayne Swan won’t be drifting off to obscurity just yet.
Whether or not the former treasurer and deputy prime minister runs again for parliament, he intends to remain involved in the public policy debate.
Launching his new book, the now Labor backbencher is as active as ever in his Queensland seat of Lilley.
“Whether I run or not I do intend to stay very much involved with public policy debate,” he told the National Press Club on Canberra on Monday.
He says there are advantages from not serving on the frontbench, including playing a broader role in talking to people about what Australia’s choices are and how Labor will go about getting them.
“I want to contribute to the community. I can do that as a member of parliament. I can do that in other ways as well.”
Mr Swan’s The Good Fight: Six Years, Two Prime Ministers and Staring Down the Great Recession is an insight into how the Labor government of the time responded to the 2008-2009 global financial crisis .
It also provides an insider’s view of the leadership wrangle between Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard that so debilitated Labor.
Tanya Plibersek, a minister in the Rudd and Gillard governments and now deputy opposition leader, launched the latest contribution to political literature in Canberra on Monday.
She says the book is as much about Mr Swan’s values in wanting to keep people employed, as it is about the technical aspects and decisions taken that left Australia as the stand-out economy during the GFC.
It tells how close Australia was to joining the rest of the world in recession, in particular as economists waited in June 2009 for the country’s official growth figure.
“It has more tensions than your average thriller, at least for budget tragics like us,” Ms Plibersek said.