U.S. Rep. Mark Souder, a Republican from Indiana, announced today that he is resigning from his seat in Congress, effective Friday, May 21, after being caught having an affair with a member of his staff.
I assuming the staff member he was sleeping with was female, because I have seen no mention otherwise anywhere in the news coverage of his resignation, and I’m sure that if her had been having an affair with a man SOMEONE would have pointed that out!
Human Rights Campaign spokesman Michael Cole released a statement just a few minutes ago that described Souder as “notoriously anti-gay,” and noted that Souder has scored “a zero on every single Human Rights Campaign scorecard since entering Congress in 1995. He has consistently voted against equal employment protections, common-sense hate crimes laws, increases in HIV/AIDS funding and providing any measure of equality to same-sex couples.”
“Rep. Souder proves once again that it is not LGBT people who are the threat to ‘family values,'” the HRC statement said.
The Associated Press notes that Souder — who is a 59-year-old father of three and grandfather of two, and in his eighth term in Congress — just won a particularly “bruising” primary campaign and was to have faced Democrat Tom Hayhurst in the November general election. Hayhurst got 46 percent of the vote when he ran against Souder for Congress in the last election.
In announcing his resignation today, Souder said: “I sinned against God, my wife and my family by having a mutual relationship with a part-time member of my staff. In the poisonous environment of Washington, D.C., any personal failing is seized upon and twisted for political gain. I am resigning rather than put my family through a painful drawn out process.”
You know, whenever I see a politician say something like Souder’s “poisonous environment of Washington, D.C.” comment, I can’t help but wonder two things: First, who poisoned the environment in the first place? And second, if being in Congress is such a vile experience, why was he running for another term?
And you know, if he’d thought about not putting his family through pain BEFORE he jumped into bed with his staffer, he wouldn’t have to be worried about putting them through pain NOW. I’m just sayin’.