Republican Rep. Trent Franks to resign amid investigation into inappropriate conduct

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The announcement from Franks came shortly after the House Ethics Committee announced they were investigating sexual harassment claims made into actions by Franks.

U.S. Representative Trent Franks said on Thursday he will resign after two former staff members complained about discussions he had with them about efforts to find a surrogate mother.

"We will have a statement a little bit later, but that's all I can tell you right now", Franks told Roll Call.

"Rather than allow a sensationalized trial by media damage those things I love most, this morning I notified House leadership that I will be leaving Congress as of January 31st, 2018", he continued.

The eight-term lawmaker, a staunch conservative and fierce opponent of abortion, said in a statement that he never physically intimidated, coerced or attempted to have any sexual contact with any member of his congressional staff. "I deeply regret that my discussion of this option and process in the workplace caused distress", he said in a statement.

Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., announced on the Senate floor Thursday that he will leave office at the end of the year.

Upon leaving the House floor on Thursday, Trent was consoled by fellow Republican members, including Rep. Louis Gohmert, R-Texas, Rep. Robert Aderholt, R-Ala., and Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz.

Franks represents Arizona's 8th district and first entered Congress in 2002. Franks has served in Congress since 2003.

He supported President Donald Trump a year ago, even in the wake of the "Access Hollywood" tape, by saying Trump's words, while bad, did not compare to Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's support of abortion rights. Jeff Flake before Flake announced his retirement. But no revelations were aired in the aftermath of the decision, and Franks went on to assume the chairmanship of a House Judiciary subcommittee.

Franks drew a sharp response from Democrats during a 2013 House committee debate when he said "the incidence of rape resulting in pregnancy are very low".

This is a developing story.

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