Republican Congressman Trent Franks announced he will resign from office next year after it was revealed that he is under investigation for asking female members of his staff to have his baby. According to Politico, the eight-term congressman will step down on Jan. 31, 2018.
In a statement, Franks said he regrets his decision to raise the question with a pair of his female staffers.
“I have recently learned that the Ethics Committee is reviewing an inquiry regarding my discussion of surrogacy with two previous female subordinates, making each feel uncomfortable,” the Republican said. “I deeply regret that my discussion of this option and process in the workplace caused distress.”
Just so it’s clear: Franks didn’t apologize for telling his female subordinates to carry his child. Instead, the Congressman said he’s only sorry that it caused “distress” in the workplace.
House Speaker Paul Ryan was reportedly informed of the Franks’ inappropriate behavior last week and immediately urged him to step down.
Speaker Paul Ryan statement on Trent Franks.
He asked him to resign. pic.twitter.com/ckX2Zp20a1
— Matt Fuller (@MEPFuller) December 7, 2017
Sure, it’s nice that Speaker Ryan is eager to do the right thing when it comes to a member of Congress that most Americans had no idea existed before today. But it would be refreshing if he’d show the same eagerness when it comes to the President of the United States, who is literally on tape admitting to much worse transgressions than Franks – or Sen. Al Franken, who also announced his resignation on Thursday.
At the end of the day, Franks was right to step aside. Paul Ryan was correct in urging him to do so. But as more members of Congress are forced to resign over these sex scandals, the more it becomes clear that Donald Trump – a man credibly accused of doing much worse – should follow suit.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.