Florida Republican Rep. Trey Radel, the freshman lawmaker who pleaded guilty to cocaine possession last year and then briefly entered rehab, announced his resignation from Congress on Monday.
Radel’s formal resignation letter didn’t mention his guilty plea to cocaine possession in November, but said his “struggles” made it impossible to serve effectively, despite dealing with “those issues on a personal level.” Letters to House Speaker John Boehner and Florida Gov. Rick Scott said his resignation would take effect at 6:30 p.m. on Monday.
“Regardless of some personal struggles in 2013, this year has already been tremendously positive as I focus on my health, family and faith,” Radel wrote. “Unfortunately, some of my struggles had serious consequences. While I have dealt with those issues on a personal level, it is my belief that professionally I cannot fully and effectively serve as a United States Representative to the place I love and call home, Southwest Florida.”
Radel was caught purchasing $250 of cocaine from an undercover police officer in October, and claimed he was using the drug to help treat his alcoholism.After completing rehab in December, Radel initially vowed he would not step aside, despite resignation calls from fellow Republicans, including Scott.
See more excerpts from Radel’s resignation letter below.