Report: Kihuen May Run For Reelection Despite Vows To Retire Over Allegations

L.E. Baskow/Las Vegas Sun

Despite vowing in December to retire at the end of his term after at least three women accused him of sexual misconduct, Rep. Ruben Kihuen (D-NV) is now reportedly considering filing for reelection.

In the weeks leading up to the announcement of his retirement, Kihuen defiantly denied the allegations and claimed many Democratic leaders knew about the accusations during his campaign.

According to a Nevada Independent report Wednesday, Kihuen has recently been in contact with donors as well as the local culinary union, which covers casinos, restaurants, hotels and bars, about a potential bid. He has also reportedly been in touch with retired Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) about running again, but it is unclear if Reid was supportive of his potential run. Kihuen has reportedly told donors that he’s been encouraged to seek a second term, according to the Nevada Independent.

The Democratic House member has until next Friday to decide whether the file.

Former Rep. Steven Horsford announced he would run for Kihuen’s seat after Kihuen said he would not seek reelection. The culinary union is reportedly going to continue backing Horsford, even if Kihuen throws in his hat, according to The Nevada Independent.

After several high-level Democrats — including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) — called on Kihuen to resign when allegations of sexual assault, harassment and misconduct surfaced, the House Ethics Committee opened an investigation on Dec. 15. A day later, Kihuen said he would not seek reelection, despite his consistent denial of all the accusations.

At least three women have come forward, claiming Kihuen harassed them for dates and sex despite their repeated rejections. One woman told Buzzfeed News she left her job working for Kihuen’s campaign because he repeatedly harassed her and allegedly touched her thighs without her consent twice.

A spokesperson for Kihuen and Pelosi did not immediately respond to TPM’s requests for comments.