In a letter to Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R), former Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-TX) pushed back against Abbott’s request for Farenthold to pay for the special election to replace him.
Abbott asked him to fund the election as a reimbursement to taxpayers for the $84,000 used to settle Farenthold’s 2015 sexual harassment case, one of the catalysts that pushed him out of office in the first place.
“In my opinion, as well as many other county officials I have heard from, a special election was not warranted and should not have been called,” Farenthold said. “However, that was your decision based upon the advice you were given. Since I didn’t call it and don’t think it’s necessary, I shouldn’t be asked to pay for it.”
Farenthold then claimed his innocence, saying that he settled the case out of concern for his constituents, not because he was guilty. He resigned his office before the House Ethics Committee could complete an investigation.
He also expressed his personal hurt that Abbott published the letter requesting Farenthold to fund the special election before speaking to the former representative personally.
“I am also disappointed you chose to release your letter to the media before
talking to me first,” he said. “I know you are an honorable man who is above cheap political shots, bullying and kicking someone while they are down, especially a fellow
Republican. I’ll just chalk it up to bad advice from your staff.”
Farenthold resigned in early April after being mired in scandal about the settlement and general outcry resulting from his habitual sexual harassment, verbal abuse and rage in the workplace.
H/T The Hill