Renowned Australian entrepreneur Dick Smith has thrown his support behind Malcolm Turnbull, who this afternoon resigned from cabinet and called for a ballot for the leadership of the federal Liberal Party.
Smith, who said earlier this year he planned to launch his own political party, told SmartCompany he thinks business confidence would rise if Malcolm Turnbull was prime minister.
“I think he could get more business confidence,” Smith says.
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“He’s a successful businessman and I like the fact he’s middle of the road. Most Aussies like middle of the road people.”
In his pitch to the Australian electorate this afternoon, Turnbull said his leadership bid is a decision he has “not taken lightly” but he said he believes Prime Minister Tony Abbott hasn’t provided the economic leadership the country needs.
“We need advocacy, not slogans,” Turnbull says.
Smith told SmartCompany in March his interest in establishing his own political party, The Dick Smith Party, stems from his interest in population sustainability and his anger at claims by governments that they are slashing red tape, while not doing so.
He said at the time small Australian businesses are being “destroyed” by over-regulated industries, including the aviation industry.