An MP in a crucial swing-vote seat has told federal parliament she will not contest the next election.
Labor MP for Parramatta Julie Owens has made a shock announcement, declaring she will be quitting politics after 18 years.
Ms Owens announced on the floor of parliament on Thursday that she would not battle for her seat at the next poll.
“I’m announcing today that I won’t be recontesting the seat of Parramatta at the next election,” she said in her resignation speech.
“I‘m now in my 18th year as the member for Parramatta and I can honestly say I’ve loved every single minute of it.”
The 63-year-old said she wished to retire from politics entirely and spend more time with her loved ones.
“I’m approaching retirement age and the time has come for me to spend more time with my family,” she said.
“Particularly my grandchildren, who don’t necessarily think being a politician is the best thing in the world because they miss their grandma quite a lot.”
Ms Owens was first elected into the seat of Parramatta in 2004, ending an eight-year reign for Liberal MP Ross Cameron.
But the important Western Sydney seat has proved difficult for Labor to hold onto.
Ms Owens retained the seat by a margin of just 3.5 per cent at the 2019 election.
A tight race is expected to ensue in the crucial swing-vote electorate at the forthcoming federal election.
The Labor Party will now commence a preselection process to determine Ms Owens’ replacement.
Originally published as Labor MP resigns from important Western Sydney electorate