Congressman who settled complaint won't seek re-election

Marie Harrington
January 27, 2018

- A Republican congressman from Pennsylvania who settled a former aide's sexual harassment complaint with taxpayer money won't seek re-election.

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., removed Meehan from the House Ethics Committee after the Times' report.

Meehan explained that his use of the word soulmate was "in no way" meant to "suggest a romantic partnership", in a letter sent to his campaign chairman Thursday and first obtained by The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Congressman Pat Meehan (R-Delaware) announced he will not run for re-election this year after allegations he sexually harassed a staffer and paid a settlement out of his office budget.

After filing a complaint past year, the unnamed former aide reached a confidential agreement with Meehan's office, which granted her an undisclosed fee which would be paid from his congressional office fund. The report, which cites unnamed sources, alleges Meehan romantically pursued the younger staffer and became angry with her when she entered a romantic relationship with another man.

After beginning a complaint process, the aide eventually left her job and later reached a confidential agreement with Meehan that involved the payment of an undisclosed amount, drawn from Meehan's congressional office fund.

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Alexis Ronickher, the lawyer for Meehan's accuser, told CNN on Thursday that she and her client have no comment regarding Meehan's plans, other than this "does not end the need for the House Ethics Committee to continue its investigation into the matter, which my client will fully cooperate with".

A Republican named Joe Billie, who was running on the grounds that Meehan wasn't sufficiently pro-Trump, is also in the race; here's an interview Billie gave to someone known as "Red Pill."

The settlement, which is reported to be thousands of dollars, was kept secret.

Meehan's former aide came forward over the summer, telling the congressional Office of Compliance that veteran lawmaker became hostile when she did not return his advances.

He said he told the aide "that I was a happily married man and I was not interested in a relationship, particularly not any sexual relationship, but we were soul mates". "I think that the idea of soul mate is that sort of person that you go through remarkable experiences together".

"I do not believe that is in the best interest of the constituents I represent", he wrote.

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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