Rep. Tom Reed (R-NY) released a statement late Sunday night admitting to sexual misconduct with a lobbyist and announcing he would not seek office in 2022.
In Reed’s statement, he apologized to Nicolette Davis, the lobbyist who accused him of inappropriate behavior. “I hear her voice and will not dismiss her. In reflection, my personal depiction of this event is irrelevant,” Reed wrote, taking full responsibility. “I am sorry, and take full responsibility. I further apologize to my wife and kids, my family, the people of the 23rd District, my colleagues, and those who have supported me for the harm this caused them.”
The New York Republican brought up the struggles he went through in that time of his life, “I am powerless over alcohol,” he said. Reed is “approaching four years of that personal life journey of recovery,” and he will “continue that journey day-by-day” with the support of his loved ones.
“As I go forward, I strive to be a better human being, continue to fight for what I believe in, and to make people’s lives better in any way I can. I hope this formal apology is just the start,” Reed expressed.
He will not seek any elected office in the 2022 election. Reed finished the statement by keeping his promise from when he was first elected, only serving a maximum of six terms. His retirement will take effect at the end of his current term on January 2, 2023.
My statement— pic.twitter.com/WCyvxjjZo5
— Tom Reed (@TomReedCongress) March 21, 2021
The Washington Post originally reported the allegations from Davis, who was a lobbyist for the insurer Aflac at the time. Davis said Reed was “seated next to her at a Minneapolis bar, unhooked her bra from outside her blouse and moved his hand to her thigh.”
At the bar in 2017, Davis text her co-worker, “A drunk congressman is rubbing my back,” adding later, “HELP HELP.”
Reed was first elected to the U.S. House in a special election in 2010. Reed’s predecessor, former Rep. Eric Massa (D-NY), resigned in 2010 with pending ethics investigation into allegations he groped and sexually harassed his staff members.
Reed represented District 29 from 2010 to 2013. Currently, Reed represents District 23. In the 2020 general election, he received 57.7 percent of the vote.
Last week, Reed spoke to Maria Bartiromo on Fox Business Network’s Mornings with Maria about New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) facing calls to resign over sexual misconduct allegations and a scandal regarding the cover-up of the nursing homes deaths during the coronavirus pandemic. “I don’t think he will (resign), given his past behavior and his ego. His pride will not allow him to resign, so I think impeachment, as I said a few weeks back, is the only path forward for his removal,” Reed said.
Earlier in March, Breitbart News reported Reed was hiring staff for a New York gubernatorial run, challenging Cuomo. The incumbent governor grew more vulnerable to a challenge after eight women came forward claiming they had sexual encounters with him. A recent Quinnipiac University poll showed a supermajority of voters in New York did not want Cuomo to seek reelection.
In February, Reed was one of three Republicans to join the Democrats in voting for the Equality Act. If the bill becomes law, it would likely upend the national culture as Americans have known it, affecting women’s and girls’ sports, privacy in public facilities, and faith-based institutions. The bill would ensure “sexual orientation and gender identity are included among protected classes — without protection for religious objections.”