Oregon Congressman David Wu has just resigned. Dave Weigel has his statement:
It has been the greatest privilege of my life to be a United States Congressman. Rare is the nation in which an immigrant child can become a national political figure. I thank God and my parents for the privilege of being an American.
Now, however, the time has come to hand on the privilege of high office. I cannot care for my family the way I wish while serving in Congress and fighting these very serious allegations.
The wellbeing of my children must come before anything else. With great sadness, I therefore intend to resign effective upon the resolution of the debt-ceiling crisis. This is the right decision for my family, the institution of the House, and my colleagues.
It is also the only correct decision to avoid any distraction from the important work at hand in Washington. I intend to go forward with new resolve and love of family, the State of Oregon, and our nation.
Wu was recently divorced and he also revealed a history of mental health problems. The kicker, however, was recent reports that he had an improper sexual encounter with a teenage girl that resulted in distraught calls to his congressional office:
Democratic Rep. David Wu admitted to a senior Democrat that he “did not use good judgment” during a sexual encounter with the teenage daughter of a family friend last Thanksgiving, although he claimed to have “done nothing illegal.”
Wu made the comment to Rep. John Larson (Conn.), chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, during a 40-minute meeting the two men had Monday afternoon.
Wu refused to answer any press questions about the alleged “unwanted sexual encounter” with the teenage girl as he left the House floor Monday evening.
Democrats are likely to retain Wu's seat in an upcoming special election. And Oregon Democrats can rest easy that Portland Mayor Sam Adams has survived two recall attempts after having a relationship with a (possibly underage!) teenager. State Democrats must really be proud of that accomplishment.