UPDATE 10:16 ET: Rep. Wu has announced that he will not resign his House seat over allegations of an unwanted sexual encounter, but that he will not seek reelection in 2012, according to a breaking news alert from Politico.
“He isn’t going to be running for reelection,” an anonymous Wu adviser told Politico. “But he hasn’t done anything that rises to the level of requiring him to resign.”
EARLIER: Party leaders in the House and within the greater Democratic Party are considering ways they can force Oregon Rep. David Wu out of office after recent allegations that the congressman forced himself on a young woman, Politico reported.
The daughter of one of Wu’s southern California friends and donors called the congressman’s office in tears this spring, accusing Wu of an “unwanted sexual encounter” over Thanksgiving. Wu also made headlines for his erratic behavior, such as circulating pictures of himself wearing a tiger costume, and sending aides bizarre late-night emails signed with his children’s names. Staffers urged him to seek psychiatric help, and reportedly avoided scheduling public appearances for him.
Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), with other Democrats, is reviewing options to remove Wu from the House after the latest incident. She could call for his resignation, or insist that he be investigated by the Ethics Committee. Wu spoke with congressional leaders Saturday (the news of the encounter broke late Friday night), but no details of the conversation have been released, and no formal action has yet been taken.
The seven-term congressman represents Oregon’s largest urban district, covering much of Portland and its suburbs. As a student at Stanford University, Wu was informally disciplined by the school after an ex-girlfriend accused him of forcing her to have sex with him.
Kase Wickman is a reporter for Raw Story. She holds a journalism degree from Boston University and grew up in Eugene, OR. Her work has been featured in The Boston Globe, Village Voice Media, The Christian Science Monitor, The Houston Chronicle and on NPR, among others. She lives in New York City and tweets from @kasewickman.
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