Michigan Republican Rep. Thaddeus McCotter resigned from Congress on Friday, a surprise decision that caps among the most madcap two-month periods in modern politics.
The Michigan Republican and 2012 presidential candidate announced his decision in a lengthy and characteristically verbose statement citing his desire to shift his focus to his family now that his congressional career is over. (He also quoted Bob Dylan’s “It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue”.)
McCotter failed to qualify for the primary ballot after most of his petition signatures were recently found to be fraudulent. State officials are investigating the matter.
McCotter initially opted to run a write-in campaign, but then announced he would not seek reelection.
His statement continued: “The recent event’s totality of calumnies, indignities and deceits have weighed most heavily upon my family. Thus, acutely aware one cannot rebuild their hearth of home amongst the ruins of their U.S. House office, for the sake of my loved ones I must ‘strike another match, go start anew’ by embracing the promotion back from public servant to sovereign citizen.”
McCotter’s bizarre period continued this week when the Detroit News reported that he had written a TV pilot with a rather odd premise — McCotter himself hosting a crude variety show that joked about flatulence and female anatomy, among other things. The script was leaked to the newspaper by a former staffer who thought it unbecoming a member of Congress.
McCotter said in his statement that he will no longer give interviews as the state attorney general investigates his campaign’s fraudulent signatures.
McCotter’s seat leans Republican and should be retained by the GOP. Gov. Rick Snyder (R) does not have to call a special election before the November general election, and it seems unlikely he would do so, given the cost of holding one and the short time between now and then.
McCotter’s is one of three seats that is now vacant. The others are the seats held by former congressman Jay Inslee (D-Wash.), who is running for governor, and the late congressman Donald Payne (D-N.J.), who died recently.
Here’s the full statement:
“Today I have resigned from the office of United States Representative for Michigan’s 11th Congressional District.
After nearly 26 years in elected office, this past nightmarish month and a half have, for the first time, severed the necessary harmony between the needs of my constituency and of my family. As this harmony is required to serve, its absence requires I leave.
The recent event’s totality of calumnies, indignities and deceits have weighed most heavily upon my family. Thus, acutely aware one cannot rebuild their hearth of home amongst the ruins of their U.S. House office, for the sake of my loved ones I must “strike another match, go start anew” by embracing the promotion back from public servant to sovereign citizen.
I do not leave for an existing job and face diminishing prospects (and am both unwilling and ill-suited to lobby), my priorities are twofold: find gainful employment to help provide for my family; and continue to assist, in any way they see fit, the Michigan Attorney General’s earnest and thorough investigation, which I requested, into the 2012 petition filing.
While our family takes this step into the rest of our lives, we do so with the ultimate confidence in our country’s future. True, as at other times in the life of our nation, we live in an Age of Extremes that prizes intensity over sanity; rhetoric over reality; and destruction over creation. But this too shall pass, thanks to the infinite, inspired wisdom of the sovereign people who, with God’s continued blessings, will again affirm for the generations American Exceptionalism.
Truly, it is a challenging and fortunate time to live in our blessed sanctuary of liberty.
In closing, to The People of Michigan’s 11th Congressional District, I can but say this: Thank you for the privilege of having worked for you.”
~ Thaddeus G. McCotter
Please note the Washington D.C., Milford and Livonia will offices will continue to operate under the direction of the Clerk of the United States House of Representatives. Staff will still be available to serve the needs of the citizens of the 11th Congressional District for any constituent needs.
Finally, Mr. McCotter reaffirms his previous commitment to not conduct any interviews until the findings of the Michigan Attorney General’s thorough and earnest investigation have been made public. As a private citizen, Mr. McCotter will reserve comments until this time.