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The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

I Thought Only the Taxpayers Were Supposed to Lose Their Shirts



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From today’s Morning Jolt:

A Political Horror Movie, Starring Christopher Lee

Well . . . didn’t see this coming:

Rep. Christopher Lee, R-N.Y., abruptly resigned from the House of Representatives Wednesday afternoon after a report emerged that he had sent flirtatious e-mails, including one with a bare-chested photo of himself, to a woman he met on Craigslist. Lee is married and has a young child.

“It has been a tremendous honor to serve the people of Western New York. I regret the harm that my actions have caused my family, my staff and my constituents. I deeply and sincerely apologize to them all. I have made profound mistakes and I promise to work as hard as I can to seek their forgiveness,” Lee said in a statement Wednesday evening.

“The challenges we face in Western New York and across the country are too serious for me to allow this distraction to continue, and so I am announcing that I have resigned my seat in Congress effective immediately.”

On Wednesday, the gossip website Gawker posted a story that included the e-mails allegedly exchanged between Lee and the unnamed woman. According to the story, a single 34-year-old woman from Maryland posted an ad on Craigslist’s “Women for Men” section on Jan. 14. Soon afterwards a man named Christopher Lee replied, identifying himself as a 39-year-old divorced lobbyist.

In the exchange that followed, Lee reportedly sent the woman an e-mail including a photo of Lee with his shirt off, flexing his arms and chest. The woman later broke off her correspondence with Lee after she did an online search for him and determined that he had lied about his age and his job, the Gawker story reported.

So I take it the Christopher Lee Happy Hour/Singles Mixer at CPAC is canceled, right?

“File this under: How to lose a nice Congressional career with one stupid email,” observes Jim Hoft. He adds, “He is married and has one child. He also has no idea how the Internet works.”

Robert Stacy McCain suspects Lee didn’t understand the rules: “Let me explain something: If you want to be a member of Congress and screw around, join the Democratic Party. You can screw around all you want and no problem, if you’re a Democrat. But you can’t do that and be a Republican member of Congress.” When word broke of Lee’s resignation, McCain called it the “Fastest scandal ever! The Internet not only makes it easier for cheaters to cheat, it makes it easier for cheaters to get caught, and the rapidity with which the damning evidence becomes public tends to accelerate the resignation.”


Tags: Christopher Lee


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