KEVIN RUDD: I just watched Albo's speech. I am really humbled by what he had to say. I am really humbled about what he had to say not just about me because I'm his friend but really humbled about what he had to say about the future of the Australian Labor Party.
QUESTION: He did say that this leadership tussle is tearing the party apart and he did concede that he doesn't think you will win on Monday. If you don't think you can win on Monday…
KEVIN RUDD: Let me just go to the speech a bit more.
I think - I don't know if you saw Albo's speech but it's worth reflecting on for a bit.
Look, what Albo's talking about is fundamental. It's about what unites us rather than what divides us, and I am saying to you that having sat there and watched it there were a very few dry eyes in the Rudd household this morning - not about what he had to say about yours truly but what he had to say about us as a movement and the importance of owning all the good stuff we've done together - myself, Julia, the whole team - and also where we need to go for the future.
I think it's really important when you look at that just to - everyone to take a deep breath, step back a bit and think for a moment about what's really important, which is the future and whether we can defeat Mr Abbott, which means protecting basic stuff like hospitals, investments in our schools, the national broadband network and preventing the restoration of Work Choices.
QUESTION: Mr Rudd, Bruce Hawker said that the Prime Minister should consider not standing on Monday because she can't win; only you can. Do you agree?
KEVIN RUDD: Well Bruce is entitled to his point of view. What I'm concerned about is simply the attitude of my parliamentary colleagues as we head into what's an important contest.
And I go back to what Bruce said before in terms of his other remarks about the important things that we have done together as a government and I go back to what Albo said.
Look I've heard a lot of speeches in politics. I've given a few as well. I've inflicted some on you over time. Don't nod so enthusiastically.
This is a standout from Albo because it's from the heart; it's from the head; it's from both.
You know if you're in this hardened business of politics, when someone gets it absolutely right, and he got it right because he was talking about how the things that unite us are much bigger always than the things that divide us.
QUESTION: Recently you said that you wouldn't challenge Julia [indistinct]. Does that mean that you have given up your ambitions of being Prime Minister again or [indistinct]?
KEVIN RUDD: You know, people go into complex parsing of sentences and statements. I stand exactly by what I said yesterday. I couldn't have been clearer and that remains my position.
QUESTION: How much of a boost do you think Albo's statement today gives to your numbers and also just on Laura's question, he did make the point that it is tearing the party apart and you might not win. So what is the point of this if you want to build Labor?
KEVIN RUDD: I think on the question of the party's future, what Albo's talking about today is binding hearts together and binding minds together for the future.
Sure, as I think I said when I got back here, it's a tough old contest, it's a tough old race. I have never been in one which is not and that's just political reality, from day one. From day one when I was preselected for the Australian Labor Party, back when you were in short pants, it was tough. I then lost the next election.
Coming back and being re-elected again was tough. Every contest is tough. This one's tough as well.
QUESTION: How is about unity though? How is about unity if it is tearing the party apart?
KEVIN RUDD: Well, it's not just a clever line, it's what I actually think and feel about watching Albo this morning.
You're all hard-bitten political journalists; you've all been around for a while; you've seen people as I said, make some good speeches and some utterly appalling speeches and points in between, but you know Albo hit the nail on the head. What we have done together these last four years has been fantastic for the country. What we've done together under my leadership and Julia's has been fantastic for the country.
The fact that together as a team this whole country of ours was able to come through the global financial crisis without these people losing their jobs - that's what it's all about and we did it as a team.
And so his call to us all I think is to bind the hearts together.
SPEAKER: Last question.
KEVIN RUDD: I think there was someone who hadn't…
QUESTION: [Indistinct] bit of a truce before Monday might stop some of the infighting in some of the big groups.
KEVIN RUDD: Well there's been a fair bit of incoming. I think that's fair to say. It's been a bit rich from time to time and I think everyone needs to take a long hard long at themselves and reflect on what he had to say.
Albo's not Leader of the House for nothing. The reason I made him Leader of the House four years ago was because I thought he'd be damned good at it and he has been. But in being damned good at it, you've got to bring together a bunch of skills - one's having a heart for what we stand for, and a head and a hard head about the reality of politics in the House of Representatives.
But , but he's in that position to say I think what underneath it all, we, all - all of us on our side of politics, the great Australian Labor Party - really feel about the future.
So I think taking his call to heart is to detox some of this debate and I really hope that's what happens.
QUESTION: The polls today - what's your reaction to them and what message to local members [indistinct] to take action?
KEVIN RUDD: Look everyone will look at the opinion polls today, draw their own conclusions.
They are out there in black and white for everyone to look at, up to them in terms of what conclusions they make.
The key thing for me is how do we, as an Australian government, prevent Mr Abbott from becoming Prime Minister given he is not Captain Negative, he's Field Marshal Negative.
This guy is right out there on the negative side of politics. Our job is to stop him from destroying what we built for these communities.
I've talked to a lot of kids this morning who've had new buildings put up in their schools. That's because of us; he opposed it.
I've met some folk this morning also who've had a bit to do with the hospitals on Brisbane's north side - the huge investment of funds because of us - the last mob took funding out.
When I look at the fact that here in Brisbane's CBD the broadband's probably not too bad, but get out to the burbs, let me tell you, Tony Walker, it's not and as a result we want to make that available to everyone in Australia and what Mr Abbott says - he's going to rip it up.
So can I say what causes me to get out of bed of a morning is how do we defeat him and how do we build a better Australia for all these good folk here, while never throwing the fair go out the back door.
That's what we are on about and having said that folks I'm going to talk to some other people here.