For those of you who don't want to listen to it, here's a transcript:
13News and its partners at the Virginian Pilot have learned that Republican Congressman Ed Schrock has resigned from office.
The announcement came in the form of a press release Monday afternoon.
Schrock said, "In recent weeks, allegations have surfaced that have called into question my ability to represent the citizens of Virginia's Second Congressional District.”
He did not elaborate on the nature of those allegations.
Schrock was elected to Congress in 2000. He represented Virginia Beach, Accomack and Northampton counties, and parts of Hampton and Norfolk.
Update: Timerigger in the comments links to another article.
(More after the jump.)
(Click to enlarge.)
[The following is a revision of an earlier diary entry of mine.]
Rep. Ed Schrock is a two-term Republican congressman from Virginia's Second District. The National Journal ties him as the second most conservative person in all of Congress in 2003, behind only Dennis Hastert. This isn't necessarily a turn-off in his district, which includes Virginia Beach, home of Pat Robertson, as well as Hampton Roads, home of 300,000 active-duty military and veterans. A strong family man with a wife and kids, Schrock was a co-sponsor of the Federal Marriage Amendment and opposes any possible rights for gay people, including non-discrimination in employment. But now Schrock has lost his own job for being gay. Or, more specifically, he has resigned for being an enormously hypocritical man who attacks other people's private rights while enjoying those same private rights himself.
BlogActive gave everyone a heads-up 12 days ago. Its author, a gay activist with a track-record of outing hypocrites, said Schrock used a telephone dating service to solicit gay sex, and that he would be releasing the tapes soon. He still has not released the tapes. I've actually heard part of one tape, played to me over the phone by a "friend in high places" in DC. The tip-off was probably when he said, "You must be very discreet. I cannot overemphasize that," while the rest definitely did not sound like what a member of Congress might say.
While the media and Virginia Republicans sort this all out, we have a great challenger in Democrat David Ashe. Ahse is a Marine Corps. lawyer, Iraq War veteran and Ground Zero bucket brigade volunteer. Ashe hasn't received much funding from the party so far, but has recently appeared at rallies with both Max Cleland and John Kerry. Ashe considers himself a "proud Democrat," and was until now considered a long-shot, as the district was crafted by Republicans to discourage Democratic challengers.
Ashe would roll back tax cuts for those making over $300,000, oppose the unfunded NCLB mandate, support pay-as-you-go budget rules, and fight for a real prescription drug benefits bill. Ashe also opposes the Federal Marriage Amendment and supports fair trade as well as a woman's right to a "safe, legal and rare" abortion.
Anyone want to nominate Ashe for the dKos Dozen?
[Old] Update: There's concern by some in the comments that this is unfair to Schrock. First, this is simply the hand we were dealt. It now appears Democrats at the state and national level were aware of this when Schrock first ran, but did nothing. Now, however, an outside activist is outing him anyway. Second, how is this revelation, in this situation, a dirty tactic? As I asked in the [old] comments, what if Schrock, an opponent of abortion, were exposed as someone who had encouraged a female mistress to have an abortion? Would exposing that be a dirty tactic as well? Both situations involve the exposure of a cheater who has opposed the private rights of others, while taking advantage of those same private rights himself.
[New] Update: PBS in the comments offers this bit of Virginia elections law:
Should the nominee of any party die, withdraw, or have his nomination set aside for any reason, the party may nominate to fill the vacancy in accordance with its own rules. A candidate who has been disqualified for failing to meet the filing requirements of Article 1 (§ 24.2-500 et seq.) of this chapter shall not be renominated. No party shall renominate any person whose nomination has been set aside for fraud knowingly participated in by the candidate. The party chairman or chairmen shall promptly certify the name of any such nominee to the appropriate electoral boards and the nominee shall promptly comply with the filing requirements of Article 1 of this chapter.