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Published:February 9th, 2011 22:29 EST
chris lee

Topless Pic Brings Down New York Rep. Chris Lee

By Robert Paul Reyes

"Rep. Chris Lee, R-N.Y., abruptly resigned Wednesday after the gossip website Gawker disclosed that the married congressman had e-mailed a shirtless picture of himself to a woman he met through Craigslist.

chris lee

`I regret the harm that my actions have caused my family, my staff and my constituents," the two-term congressman said in a statement posted on his site Wednesday evening. He said he made "profound mistakes."`

`The challenges we face in Western New York and across the country are too serious for me to allow this distraction to continue, and so I am announcing that I have resigned my seat in Congress effective immediately.`"

http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2011-02-09-lee-resigns-amid-scandal_N.htm

A spokesperson for the freshman congressman at first suggested that the emails could have been a result of somebody hacking into Lee`s account, but the shirtless pic of Lee was hard to explain away.

The married congressman should have told the truth right away, and confessed that he was flirting with women online. Then he should have said that his indiscretions were a private matter of concern only to his family.

I take pleasure when a hypocrite like former Senator Larry Craig is caught up in a sordid sex scandal. But Lee has been in office for less than two months, and he doesn`t have a history of being a holier-than-thou "family values" politician.

Everybody it seems is allowed to have their quirks, except for politicians. Politics is a rough and tumble game, and I don`t want a Boy Scout to represent me. I don`t care if my congressman has a penchant for sending topless photos of himself to strangers online, as long as he keeps his campaign promises, and doesn`t succumb to bribery.

Shame on Gawker for bringing this story to light, this is not a John Edwards type scandal in which a politician is allegedly using campaign funds to silence a mistress. Lee`s marital infidelity is a personal failing, not a professional mistake.

I hope Rep. Lee changes his mind, and stays in office.

Follow Robert Paul Reyes on Twitter: http://twitter.com/robertpaulreyes