Treasurer Josh Frydenberg says the behaviour of disgraced Coalition MP Andrew Laming is “demeaning to women”.
Liberal MP Dr Laming has announced he is stepping down from “all Parliamentary roles effective immediately” and won’t re-contest the next election.
It comes after an extensive 9News investigation uncovered allegations of inappropriate behaviour by Dr Laming towards three separate women, including one who alleges he took photos of her bottom.
Following the latest allegations, which aired in a 9News exclusive on Saturday night, Dr Laming issued a statement saying he was stepping down from “all Parliamentary roles effective immediately”.
Mr Frydenberg told Today that Dr Laming’s behaviour had fallen below community standards and the public expectation of politicians.
“I don’t think his behaviour is acceptable at all. In fact, I think it’s demeaning to women. And he has again taken steps to correct his behaviour. That’s where the focus is now,” he said.
“He’s obviously apologised for that, more importantly he’s now engaging in counselling and getting the support services that he needs.”
If Dr Laming quits, it would trigger a by-election, a loss in which would mean the government would be in a minority.
Mr Frydenberg said he supported Dr Laming’s decision to announce he would quit Federal Parliament at the next election.
Last week a 9News investigation revealed Mr Laming had allegedly been bullying two women from his Brisbane electorate online.
Mr Laming issued an apology in Parliament about the comments.
“They are both highly regarded individuals within our Redland community,” he said.
” … I express my regret and deep apologies for the hurt and distress that that communication may have caused.
“Today in this House I want to retract those comments and issue an unreserved public apology.”