Republican Congressman resigns amid sexual misconduct probe

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Washington, April 7 (IANS) Blake Farenthold, a Republican Representative from Texas, resigned after facing an ethics investigation into alleged sexual misconduct.

“While I planned on serving out the remainder of my term in Congress, I know in my heart it’s time for me to move along and look for new ways to serve,” Farenthold, 56, said on Friday.

The Congressman added that he had sent a letter to Texas Governor Greg Abbott about resigning from his seat effective 5 p.m. on Friday, reports Xinhua news agency.

Earlier, the US House Committee on Ethics said it was investigating Farenthold over allegations of sexual harassment, discrimination, and retaliation involving a former female staffer.

While Farenthold has denied the sexual harassment accusation, he said in 2017 that he would not seek re-election.

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It was reported in December that Farenthold used $84,000 from taxpayers to settle the sexual harassment claim, which he has publicly promised to repay.

Steve Stivers, Chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee Representative, urged Farenthold to be true to his words and pay back the money.

“Congress must hold ourselves to a higher standard and regain the trust of the American people,” he said in a statement.

Farenthold is the latest of several US lawmakers who have resigned or not sought re-election after being accused of sexual harassment. There is no immediate plan from Texas to fill Farenthold’s Congressional seat.

–IANS

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