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Keating drops in to rally Labor supporters -

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ELIZABETH JACKSON: The Labor Party has turned to one of its elders to help invigorate its campaign.

Last night the Minister for Education and Workplace Relations, Bill Shorten, launched his local campaign with the help of former prime minister, Paul Keating.

Mr Shorten invoked the achievement of Mr Keating back in 1993 when he won an election which many had deemed unwinnable for Labor.

Simon Lauder reports from Melbourne.

SIMON LAUDER: The posters and the t-shirts said "Bill Shorten for Maribyrnong", but this was clearly much more than a campaign launch for a local MP.

Hundreds of people packed a lecture hall at St Albans in Melbourne's west to hear from a Labor hero.

Paul Keating painted Labor as nation builders and attacked the Federal Opposition as lacking imagination.

PAUL KEATING: They're always mean. They're always mean - mean little people.

(Laughter and applause)

No imagination, no bigness, and no heart. Of course, just a natural cycle means every now and again, they get another go. I mean, we've sort of got to go through it in a weary kind of way to get them off the stage again, so we can get back to what we do, which is building the country up.

SIMON LAUDER: And Mr Keating had a go at the Shadow Treasurer, Joe Hockey, for failing to release the full costings of the Opposition's policies.

PAUL KEATING: Joe Hockey said "people are bored with numbers". Really, Joe?


Really? Not bored with you, are they?

Bored with the numbers. Well, I'm happy to be bored with the numbers. And today of course we've seen two very important professionals come out calling into question the greats gaps in the spending and taxing plans of the Coalition.

And this debate will go on until, of course, they come clean.

SIMON LAUDER: The Member for Maribyrnong Bill Shorten had an eye to the Keating era in his own speech, urging his supporters to ignore those who say Labor can't win the election.

BILL SHORTEN: We are, as I said - hopefully in the spirit of Paul Keating - we are the enlargers, we are the doers, we are the dreamers, and most certainly, we are the fighters.

We have 14 days to go before the election. We have to build on the last five-and-a-half years and secure it in the next 14 days.

We have 14 days to make our case to the Australian people. We have 14 days for every one of us here to have many conversations with people. We have 14 days to win another election for Labor. We have 14 days to win what many consider to be an unwinnable election.

You heard from Paul Keating tonight - we've done it before, and we can do it again. Thank you.


ELIZABETH JACKSON: Minister for Education and Workplace Relations, Bill Shorten, ending that story from Simon Lauder.