Yesterday, Arizona GOP Rep. Trent Franks announced that he would resign in January. His announcement came after the House Ethics Committee said that it would investigate allegations of sexual harassment by Franks. In his statement on Thursday, Franks hinted that resigning would save his love ones the embarrassment of having to go through a public prosecution that would be unfair and exaggerated. Franks acknowledged that some of his actions may have made staffers “uncomfortable.” Franks admitted to discussing fertility issues and surrogacy with two female staffers. Franks, however denied ever having made any sexual contact or physically intimidating anyone.
But in the midst of this current cultural and media climate, I am deeply convinced I would be unable to complete a fair House Ethics investigation before distorted sensationalized versions of this story would pull me, my family, my staff, and my noble colleagues in the House Of Representatives through hyperbolized public excoriation.”
Franks finished his statement by saying that he would be leaving Congress as of January 31, 2018. Franks changed his mind about the January date this afternoon when he announced that his resignation would be effective today.
“Last night, my wife was admitted to the hospital in Washington, D.C. due to an ongoing ailment. After discussing options with my family, we came to the conclusion that the best thing for our family now would be for me to tender my previous resignation effective today, December 8, 2017.”
Franks’ wife being hospitalized may have played a big part in his decision to make his resignation effective immediately, but it could have also been a hope by Franks that more information about his alleged wrongdoings would not be made public. Franks admitted to talking about surrogacy with two female staffers, but sources reported that one staffer said Franks suggested that he have sex with her to conceive a child for him and his wife, and another source reported that a staffer claimed Franks had offered her $5 million to act as a surrogate. That source said that Franks had asked her at least four times. There was going to be a good chance that the longer Franks would’ve stayed in office, the uglier this story was going to get. Franks’ wife being admitted to the hospital may have been an easy out for Franks. His resignation doesn’t necessarily mean that there won’t be more women coming forward with more allegations against Franks.