Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has weighed in on an embattled Liberal MP who drunkenly crashed his car into a house.
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg says embattled Liberal MP Tim Smith needs to do some “soul searching” about stepping down.
Mr Smith crashed his car while driving with a blood alcohol level more than twice the legal limit.
He has been told by his party leader not to contest the next Victorian state election.
Mr Frydenberg weighed in on Thursday morning.
“Tim obviously by his own admission has done something which has been unacceptable,” he told reporters in Melbourne.
“Getting behind the wheel after drinking too much is dangerous.
“He now needs to take the time to reflect on his own position, a bit of soul searching, he needs to reflect on the words of his state leader, Matthew Guy, and make a decision about his own future in the coming weeks.”
The member for Kew resigned from the opposition frontbench after he crashed his car into a Hawthorn home on Saturday, returning a blood alcohol reading of 0.131.
His party leader later declared Mr Smith “wouldn’t find his way onto the frontbench of any parliamentary Liberal Party I lead”.
In his first public appearance since the scandal Mr Smith said on Wednesday that drink driving was the “worst decision of my life”, but he was adamant “one error” should not end his political career.
Mr Smith repeatedly said he was asked to “reflect” on his position, but stopped short of agreeing that he was told by Mr Guy he should step down at the next election.
“It’s the worst thing that has ever happened in my life and the most stupid decision I ever made,” he said.
“If I could go back and change it all I absolutely would.”
Mr Smith then appeared to stumble over his words at one point when asked about how many drinks he had moments before he crashed his car.
“I had a couple … I had a few … I had quite a few … clearly far too much,” he said.
Despite the awkward exchange and spiralling storyline Mr Frydenberg could not say if Mr Smith should resign.
“It’s important work that he was elected to do in his local community and he’s got to continue to serve that community,” he said.
“But as for his future career prospects and making decisions, they are matters for him.”
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews remain tight lipped about the scandal during a press conference on Thursday morning, saying it was a matter for Mr Smith, the Liberal Party and Victoria Police.
It’s expected Mr Smith will make a decision in the next two weeks before preselection nominations for the 2022 state election conclude.