Senator Bob Carr said this morning he will quit the Upper House, after being recruited by former prime minister Julia Gillard 18 months ago.
Carr — who served as foreign minister — confirmed widespread speculation about his political future at a press conference this morning.
“I don’t want to be one of those preachers, a full-time commentator on the Australian Labor party,” he said of his future outside of politics.
“I think that would be living in the past for me.
“I am going to reinvent myself as a specialist on Asia.”
Carr also paid tribute to both prime ministers he worked under, Kevin Rudd and Gillard, adding he would have served another three years if the Labor party won the election.
His resignation will give the New South Wales right faction of the Labor Party the chance to select a new Senator.
Names in the running are former central coast MP Deb O’Neill, and former Eden-Monaro MP Mike Kelly, who both lost their seats at the September 7 federal election.
Unionist Paul Howes pulled out of the race before it was even on, after speculation Carr would quit once the Labor party was ousted at the election.
Howes said he was stepping back to avoid internal rifts within the party.
“I think it’s bad form for someone vacating a position to baptise a successor. I will leave that to the process,” Carr said.
As well as serving as a Senator and foreign minister Carr was also premier of New South Wales.
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