Federal MP Craig Thomson says he has not yet decided whether to stand for re-election, but has promised to serve out the remainder of his term while defending fraud charges.
Thomson is due to face the Melbourne Magistrates Court tomorrow on charges relating to his time as head of the Health Services Union, including that he used his work credit card to pay for prostitutes.
The Coalition has sought to delegitimise his vote in Parliament by declaring it to be "tainted", but the former Labor MP, who now sits as an independent, says he will not be resigning his seat.
"I'm absolutely committed to seeing out this term," he told The World Today.
"There are some things that I want to achieve for the electorate in this time and continue to make sure they're properly represented.
"And in that time, I'll come to a decision [on whether to recontest] having spoken to friends, colleagues, people in the ALP, people who I respect, and when it's appropriate I'll make that announcement."
Thomson conceded the legal action against him was damaging for the Government but said he thought Labor could still win the next election.
"It's tough, they're behind. But I think what she's [PM Julia Gillard] been endeavouring to do is say, 'Look at our record rather than the personal politics that we've seen over the last few years'.
"The real challenge for her obviously is getting people to listen, because it's a great record that the Government's got."
'Stranger than fiction'
The allegations that Thomson misused union funds first appeared in newspapers in 2009.
Speaking ahead of tomorrow's court appearance, Thomson said he now believed it was a mistake not to speak publicly about the story at the time.
"I think the many months of silence that I was advised to do... I think that didn't help my cause," he said.
"If you're innocent, like I am, the running away and hiding from the media cements the perception that you're a guilty person."
Thomson said he would plead not guilty when first given the opportunity to.
He said he did not want to pre-empt his defence but argued the charges were based on a discredited report by Fair Work Australia.
KPMG was last year asked to carry out an independent evaluation of how Fair Work Australia conducted its investigation into Thomson.
Its report made several criticisms of FWA, including that it did not have enough "appropriately qualified and experienced" staff to carry out the investigation.
Thomson said some of those issues would be canvassed in court by his legal team.
"Putting aside anything I've said, if anyone was looking at this HSU saga from outside, you couldn't script it," he said.
"There's a whole range of things that are quite unbelievable, but they've happened.
"Sometimes the truth is stranger than fiction."