Saturday, September 1, 2007

Craig Resigns

Unfortunately for Larry Craig, he does not understand that withdrawing his guilty plea will only make his world a little more miserable for quite a while longer.

Today at his press conference, Craig announced that he intends to resign effective September 30th. Craig's statement:

BOISE, Idaho - Senator Craig made the following statement to Idaho:

For most of my adult life, I've had the privilege of serving the people of Idaho. I am grateful for the opportunity they have given me. It has been a blessing.

I am proud of my record and accomplishments and equally proud of the wonderful and talented people with whom I have had the honor and privilege to work and serve.

I chose to serve because I truly love Idaho. What is best for Idaho has always been the focus of my efforts, and it is no different today.

To the Idahoans I represent, to my staff, my Senate colleagues and, most importantly, my wife and our family, I apologize for what I have caused.

I am deeply sorry.

I have little control over what people choose to believe, but clearing my name is important to me and my family.

Having said that, to pursue my legal options as I continue to serve Idaho would be an unwanted and unfair distraction from my job and for my Senate colleagues.

These are serious times of war and conflict - times that deserve the Senate and our full nation's attention. There are many challenges facing Idaho that I'm currently engaged in, and the people of Idaho deserve a Senator who can devote 100 percent of his time and effort to critical state and national issues.

Therefore, it is with sadness and deep regret that I announce that it is my intent to resign from the Senate, effective September 30. In doing so, I hope to allow for a smooth and orderly transition for my loyal staff, and for the person appointed to take my place at William Borah's desk. I have full confidence that Governor Otter will appoint a successor who will serve Idaho with distinction.

I apologize to the people of our great state for being unable to serve out the term to which you have elected me. I hope you understand my decision to step aside.

Few people have had the pleasure and privilege to represent Idaho for as many years as I have. Each day, each week, each year brought new challenges and opportunities to create a better life for Idahoans. I have enjoyed every moment and cannot adequately put into words how much I appreciate you giving me this chance. I hope you do not regret the confidence you have placed in me for all these years. I hope I have served you and our state to the best of my abilities.

Lastly, Suzanne and I have been humbled by the outpouring of support we have received from our friends, our family, staff and fellow Idahoans - we are profoundly and forever grateful.

Thank you.

Whether the U.S. Senate leadership will allow Craig to continue into September is any body's guess, but the media buzz will not cease.

As I prepared to watch the Craig press conference, I can only describe my feelings as surreal. Biding my time before the press conference, I was working on a box of materials in the Stallings Congressional Collection related to the Savings and Loan Crisis. During the Savings and Loan Crisis representing Idaho in the U.S. House of Representatives with Stallings was then Congressman Larry Craig. Craig is a prominent name throughout the Stallings Collection as he served with Stallings until 1990 when he ran for McClure's open Senate seat. Until this week I'd never given materials with Craig's name on them a second though. From here on out, my time with the Stallings Collection will surely bring up these same surreal feelings that come with knowing today's press conference will forever be an unforgettable moment in Idaho political history.

Watching Craig with Tom Luna, Butch Otter, and Bill Sali behind him, I couldn't help but wonder what has happened to the Republican Party not only in our state, but nationally. They part their ways with anyone who will bring them bad publicity and yet stand behind the oddest of men.

No explanation from Craig, no announcement about his sexuality, though I didn't expect one, and a rather hollow apology.

1 comment:

Kent said...

What's the deal with Luna coming out of the woodwork for the press conference?