Three weeks after video footage showing him kissing a staffer leaked to the press, Republican Rep. Vance McAllister of Louisiana announced Monday that he won't seek another term in office.
McAllister — dubbed "the kissing congressman" — told the Monroe, La., News-Star that he and his wife Kelly reached the decision Monday. "I am committed to serving the 5th District to the best of my ability through this term, but I also have to take care of my family as we work together to repair and strengthen the relationship I damaged," McAllister said.
The first-term congressman and his wife will be in Washington Monday as the House returns from recess, "because she knows it's going to be a firestorm when I get there and she didn't want me to face it alone," McAllister told the paper.
The announcement comes after top state Republicans, including Gov. Bobby Jindal, called for McAllister to resign.
House Speaker John Boehner never explicitly called on McAllister to step down, leaving it up to the freshman to make his own decision. "I expect all members to be held to the highest ethical standards, and this is no different.... He's got decisions that he has to make," Boehner said earlier this month.
McAllister was elected to Congress just last November in a hotly contested race for retiring Rep. Rodney Alexander's seat. State Sen. Neil Riser, the establishment pick who lost to McAllister in a runoff, could run again in November. Riser had the backing of Jindal, Alexander, and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, among others.