And the winner is? Well, we don't quite know yet.
Tonight, the people of Australia have sent a clear message to both major Parties... that neither Party has inspired the Australian people enough to give either of them a majority in the House of Representatives. And it seems clear that we will have a hung Parliament. So if you like anti-climaxes, this is the election for you.
Whoever forms the next Government must heed that message. And if I am given that opportunity to form the next Government, I will make it my mission over the next three years to re-inspire the Australian people into believing in the importance of their Government to help make this country an even better place. If I am given the opportunity to form the next Government I will spend every waking moment attempting to demonstrate to the Australian people that it is the Australian Labor Party who can best deliver a better quality of life for Australians and take this great nation into the future.
I would like to thank the good people of Lalor for re-electing me as their member. I will always serve you to the best of my abilities.
To the members of the Labor Party who have lost their seats this election, I offer my commiserations and I thank you for your service to the Australian people. To all the Labor candidates in this election and the people who have worked for them, I thank you for your hard work and dedication in making the case for the Labor Party. Ours is a Party with great values, most importantly that of the fair go and I am proud to lead this Party.
I congratulate Tony Abbott on his campaign. He has run a good campaign and provided strong competition for the Government. I congratulate all those new members of Parliament who will be joining us in the next Parliament as they are vested with the great privilege of serving the Australian people.
And I congratulate the four independents and one Green who have been elected to the House of Representatives. The people of their electorates have demonstrated that they believe that those five members will do a better job of representing them than either of the major Parties. That is obviously a disappointment to me, and it sends a clear message to both Parties, that I pledge to listen to. It sends a clear message that we must work harder to win the confidence and support of the Australian people. Those five members will be vested with a very important responsibility: to decide who will govern this country over the next three years. I will make it my mission to convince those five members of the Parliament that it is the Australian Labor Party who can best serve the Australian people, to provide a vision for the future of this country. I will work hard to find a way forward with these five members to deliver the best results for Australia.
For the Labor Party, that means forward thinking policies, particularly on education, health, broadband and the economy.
Lastly, I would like to thank the Australian people for their participation today in this great democracy. We will listen to the message you have sent us and we will work even harder to gain your trust, to re-inspire you and to work on your behalf to deliver great results for this great country.