• Tue. May 17th, 2022

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Texas Republican drops re-election bid after admitting to affair

WASHINGTON — Rep. Van Taylor, R-Texas, on Wednesday announced he was dropping his re-election bid after admitting to an extramarital affair.

“Today I am announcing I will not continue my campaign to seek re-election to Congress,” Taylor said in an email to his supporters. “I want to apologize for the pain I have caused with my indiscretion, most of all to my wife Anne and our three daughters.”

“For months, Anne and I have been working to repair the scars left by my actions. I am unworthy, but eternally thankful for her love and forgiveness,” he added. “Now, over the last few days I have started those same conversations with my three daughters who are the light of my life and deserve so much better.”

The 3rd Congressional District, represented by Taylor, covers parts of the Dallas suburbs.

Taylor’s announcement came a day after he fell short of the 50 percent threshold needed for an outright victory in Tuesday’s GOP primary. The result meant he was headed for a runoff against former Collin County Judge Keith Self, who finished second on Tuesday.

“I have talked with Keith Self to let him know of my decision, and I wish him the best as he seeks to become the next congressman for this district,” said Taylor, who is 49 years old.

March 2, 202202:33

But Taylor’s withdrawal left the race’s third-place finisher, Suzanne Harp, with a question: What if she’s now in second place and in a runoff against Self?

“We are busily studying and reading the statute to see if there’s a runoff,” Harp told NBC News. “We’re really focused on that right now and we’re looking at the law so we know which way is up.”

Whoever becomes the GOP nominee is likely to end up representing the Republican-leaning district that former President Donald Trump won 56 percent to 42 percent in 2020.

GOP challengers had previously criticized Taylor, who joined Congress in 2019, for being among nearly three-dozen House Republicans who voted in favor of creating a bipartisan commission to investigate the Jan. 6. attack on the U.S. Capitol. The commission was never formed, but a House committee comprised of seven Democrats and two Republicans is investigating last year’s riot.

Peter Nicholas contributed.