Emma Husar has accused “nasty, faceless” Labor figures of plotting against her and will quit politics at the next federal election after the MP’s staff claimed she bullied them.
Her western Sydney seat of Lindsay, which she holds with a margin of 1.1 per cent, will be hotly contested between Labor and the Liberals at the election due by May 2019.
An emotional Ms Husar said she threw up when she heard one former staff member’s claim she exposed herself to a fellow federal Labor MP.
“Enough is enough, I’m going to do this on my terms,” she told Nine News on Wednesday.
“They’re not going to let people just keep pummelling me the way they have for the last three weeks, with no evidence, no facts and just vexatious, malicious allegations that are just designed to smear me.
“I don’t know that my reputation will ever recover.”
Lawyer John Whelan has been investigating the complaints of Ms Husar’s 22 former staff, with his report due to be handed to NSW Labor by Friday.
They include claims she bullied and sexually harassed staff in her electorate office and diverted Labor funds into her personal bank account.
The first-term MP accused Labor figures of orchestrating the campaign against her and compromising the investigation by leaking details.
Ms Husar says some in the party resented her election because she had not come through the party machine.
“I had not done my Labor Party apprenticeship,” she told Nine.
“It was smashed into my face.
“A few nasty, faceless people can ruin someone’s career, almost completely smash it to pieces.”
In the Nine interview, she said she “threw up” when she heard an allegation she exposed herself to Labor frontbencher Jason Clare while he played with his young child in his office.
Ms Husar and Mr Clare say the incident did not happen.
“When I heard that in the initial assessment I threw up,” Ms Husar said.
“It doesn’t just allege that I did something wrong to a grown up but there was a child in the room and that’s absolutely the lowest part of what’s gone on here.”
She thanked Labor leader Bill Shorten for backing her.
“He’s always backed me, always believed in me and will continue to believe in me; that won’t change. He knows the person I am, the good that I’ve done.”
Liberal frontbencher Mitch Fifield said the Labor report needs to be made public, after claims Mr Shorten’s office knew about the investigation.
The Labor opposition leader maintains neither he or his staff knew anything of the investigation until journalists contacted his office for comment.
“This has been a very difficult period for Emma and her family. I respect the decision she’s made,” Mr Shorten said.