Boehner: Rep. Lee made own decision to resign
February 10th, 2011
01:46 PM ET
7 years ago

Boehner: Rep. Lee made own decision to resign

Washington (CNN) - Asked Thursday if he personally pressured Rep. Christopher Lee, R-New York, to resign, House Speaker John Boehner told reporters, "Congressman Lee made his own decision that he thought was in the best interest for him and his family."

Lee resigned just hours after the gossip site published emails that it said showed Rep. Lee, a married father of one, flirting with a 34 year-old woman who had posted in the dating section of Craigslist.

Boehner has reportedly told Republican members as recently as this past summer to stop partying with female lobbyists, among other unseemly behavior.

"I've had Members in here where I thought they crossed the line. I have had others I thought were approaching the line," he told Roll Call in July, acknowledging he warned members of his conference. "I say what I mean. I mean what I say. I do what I say I'm going to do," he also told the publication.

Asked about those conversations Thursday and whether he spoke specifically to Lee about his behavior, Boehner said, "My conversations with members are private and they'll remain that way."

Pressed to describe his discussions with House Republicans Boehner would only say, "I believe that members of Congress should be held to the highest ethical standard and that's what the American people expect."

One reporter asked if the culture or lifestyle of being a member of Congress contributes to the regular sex scandals on Capitol Hill. "I wouldn't know," Speaker Boehner quipped.

Filed under: Congress
soundoff (38 Responses)
  1. Mickey, NY

    Of course he did, Boehner (Weeper Of The House). Far be it from his peers to ask him to resign for making utter idiots out of them. Now go have a good cry, or haven't you heard that Kyl is resigning as well?

    GOP: Party of Morals and Ethics, my ass.

    February 10, 2011 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  2. Video Guy

    Let's hope that the Gov of NY appoint a Family Value Democrat, one should not be hard to find.

    February 10, 2011 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  3. Inmyopinion

    What is wrong with these people, if it's not a Republican then it's a Democrat. Can't they concentrate on their duties and stop wasting time.

    February 10, 2011 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  4. Boehner

    too much ah ah ah alcohol
    too much cigars
    too much tan bed

    free govt. healthcare at tax payers lunches and travelling at the backs of hard working americans...smooching with a woman at Craiglist by a GOP-Tea Party Congressman, PRICELESS!!!

    February 10, 2011 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  5. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Vitter and Ensign are prime examples of the family values party, and they are still in the senate. I really doubt that the congressional ethics republicans would have ever found time to go after Lee. Conversations are private is a part of the new transparent GOP.

    February 10, 2011 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  6. Seattle Sue

    Maybe Boehner is next. I'm hearing that John has been playing around with a couple of hotties.

    February 10, 2011 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  7. Mer

    At least he had the dignity to resign, not something we saw from Ted Kennedy or Bill Clinton.

    February 10, 2011 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  8. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    36 days and Boner has not brought one job creating bill to the house. I wonder if baggers and republicans will be able to figure out that Boner lied.

    February 10, 2011 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  9. Protect and Defend Freedom of Speech in the USA

    I don't know what possesses ANYBODY to do this crap? Especially anybody in a position of power or fame (Brett Farve?!). But one thing is clear, the Republicans hold the people accountable and they LEAVE. Contrast this with Charlie Rangel and Maxine Waters (what ever happened with her? NOTHING!) on the Democrat watch. Fact is the Democrats think they can do anything and get away with it. That has been the case to date.

    February 10, 2011 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  10. Kevin C

    He never said no he didn't pressure Lee.

    February 10, 2011 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  11. Voice of Reason

    The fake-bake 'weeper of the House' gave a complete non-answer. He didnt say that he (or other GOP party leaders) DIDNT pressure him – only that the Rep 'did what he thought was best'. So read between the lines – take a closer look at what he didnt say.

    Of course they pressured him.

    In all fairness though, they probably gave him to the count of ten to compose a resignation statement.

    February 10, 2011 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  12. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    I'm still waiting for chapter 2 of this story, there is never just one chapter to a story before the finale.

    February 10, 2011 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  13. Clwyd

    Boner Boehner, you need to get your buddies in line and remember "family values!"

    February 10, 2011 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  14. Voice of Reason

    I think it's funny that Boehner can say these two sentences in the same breath with a straight face:
    "...members of Congress should be held to the highest ethical standard..."
    "My conversations with members are private and they'll remain that way."

    Someone just put the "moron' back into oxymoron.

    February 10, 2011 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  15. Ty

    What about his two women ?????????????????????????????????????

    February 10, 2011 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  16. megan

    I think Lee wanted off of the sinking gop ship. Also Kly,Web and there will be more they know that boner is a weak crybaby and a drunk behind the wheel of that ship.

    February 10, 2011 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  17. janetlaw

    Ah – old white men in power – seems they think they can do anything they want – and we let them!!!

    February 10, 2011 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  18. Voice of Reason

    And why does the Speaker of the House send a notice to the members of his party to "Stop partying with single female lobbyists", then turn around and tell the press that he "wouldnt know" if culture or lifestyles contribute to these VERY SAME reps getting caught up in these scandals?

    So much for ethics and transparency.

    February 10, 2011 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |

    Sure and the tan man wouldn't lie as the wackjobs run the the crazy House.

    February 10, 2011 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  20. Former Republican - Now Independent

    Yeah, we wouldn't expect John Boehner to show any leadership to the country, the House, or the GOP.

    February 10, 2011 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  21. they call me "tater salad"

    Made his own decision to leave really means nothing, because the GOP would've just cut him a break and looked the other way and then lied about it to the rest of us just like they do every time one of theirs get's caught doing something immoral or unethical.

    February 10, 2011 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  22. ReFascistican

    Yeah Right Bonehead. I'm sure you told him to hit the road immediately. How can he start a scandal and you've only been leader for a month. I guess we can look for this kind of hanky panky in the upcoming months.

    February 10, 2011 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  23. Betty

    The GOP, the family values' party. Not!

    February 10, 2011 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  24. Sniffit

    Behind closed doors, Boehnhead was heard to be screaming at Lee that such incompetence at hiding one's lecherous behavior is not tolerated in the GOP and never will be. "This is the misinformation age, you moron...we've got the intertubez, tweeter, talky pictures and stuff!!! How could you be so stupid as to post your real email address? Come back to us after you're done practicing at Laguardia or Logan or something and maybe we'll talk...."

    February 10, 2011 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  25. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    , "My conversations with members are private and they'll remain that way."
    Now THAT's some funny crap coming from a member of the paranoid opposition.
    It is also b.s.
    The term is PUBLIC SERVANT, as such unless it's got something to do with our national security or some such, that line holds no water here Junior.
    You can't raise and lower the Cone of Silence whenever it suits you Boo-Hoo.

    These guys are jokes.

    February 10, 2011 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
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