BY | November 21, 2013

 

Florida Republican Rep. Henry “Trey” has pleaded guilty of misdemeanor when he was caught in a sting operation buying 3.5 grams of cocaine for $250. He has been charged to one year of supervised probation. The tearful Republican told the court that he “let down our country” and will take a leave from office, tactfully brushing off any idea of resignation.

37 year old Radel was elected to Florida district last year with Tea Party support in the Fort Myers-Naples area district. His arrest is the second one for an official, as Toronto Mayor Rob Ford was stripped of his powers by the City Council for smoking crack, drinking and boorish behavior not long before.

The freshman congressman has agreed in court to enter rehab and also pay pay a $250 fine on the misdemeanor charge.

His arrest has shocked his constituency and the Florida Democratic Party has called on him to resign immediately from Congress.

Scott Arceneaux, executive director of the Florida Democratic Party said, “Congressman Trey Radel’s conduct is an embarrassment to his district and to the state of Florida.”

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, issued a statement through spokesman Michael Steel stressing that members of Congress should be “held to the highest standards” and that the incident is “between Rep. Radel, his family and his constituents.”

Radel has expressed deep regret in court and said that he has “hit a bottom” and realizes he needs help. He confessed to struggling with alcoholism and that he made “an extremely irresponsible choice”

The guilty Congressman declared that he he will go into “intensive” drug treatment. “This is my wake-up call, I have been struggling with this . . . I am getting the help I need.”

At a news conference later he said, “I’m sorry, I have no excuse for what I’ve done. I’ve let down our country. I’ve let down my wife, and even though he doesn’t know it, I’ve let down my 2-year-old son. I want to be a better man, to be a role model for the millions of others who suffer with this disease.”

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