Rep. Trey Radel (pictured) made headlines last year, after being nabbed by undercover police for buying a small amount of cocaine in a Washington, D.C., neighborhood. Now, the Republican congressman from Florida will step down despite saying he would continue in his post.
Amid pressure from GOP leaders, including Republican Party of Florida chairman Lenny Curry, Radel issued his letter of resignation on Monday, according a report from NBC Miami. Although the freshman congressman was up for a re-election bid this year, Republican challengers began to spring forth after news of Radel’s legal issues became public. Facing what would have been impossible odds, Radel has opted to take an easier route.
“Unfortunately, some of my struggles had serious consequences,” said Radel in a letter to House Speaker John Boehner. “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 trying to buy $250 worth of the drug, and he was eventually sentenced to one year of probation for the misdemeanor offense. Radel returned to his native Florida to get treatment for alcohol addiction and returned to office at the top of the year.
Radel’s resignation will be official as of 6:30 p.m. Monday.