Well, this is big if it's true. Fox News is reporting that Mark Souder will resign as 3rd District U.S. representative today "after it came to light that he was conducting an affair with a female staffer who worked in his district office."
Multiple senior House sources indicated that the extent of the affair would have landed Souder before the House Ethics Committee.
[. . .]
Souder was absent from Washington most of last week, missing multiple votes and only voting on Thursday.
Our staff is trying to chase this down and confirm it, so stay tuned. This is the kind of "Can it possibly be true?" breaking story I usually hestitate to mention here, but County GOP Chairman Steve Shine is already on TV talking about what it means for the fall election if it is true, so reluctance at this point would be meaningless.
If it is true, let me be one of the first (of thousands to come) to say: You, too, Mark? Is there no one left whose "family values" talk is sincere?
UPDATE: Souder has scheduled an announcement for 10 a.m., and Sylvia Smith of The Journal Gazette is quoting Souder already, saying he has "sinned against God, my wife and my family." Where have we heard that before?
UPDATE 2: Here is the text of Souder's prepared remarks (as far as I could tell, he deviated only once, briefly), and here's the video of his announcement at WANE-TV. On the positive side, he was straightforward in apologizing for his sins and accepting responsibility instead of dragging his wife up there for a little extra humiliation. On the negative, his whining that his "all-consuming" job left him no room for a personal life was a pretty lame excuse, and his assertion that he was quitting before the evil political monsters could make their "poisonous" use of the incident was way over the top.
Under IC 3-13-1-4, there will now be a special election to fill Souder's seat, since his resignation will be more than 30 days away from the general election. And a caucus of GOP precinct committee members in the 3rd District will choose a candidate for the regular election. Theoretically, that could be two different people. (H/T to Fort Wayne Observed). Since Bob Thomas came in second in the primary, he'll obviously be given some consideration, but don't be surprised if it's somebody else. I've already heard state Sen. Marlin Stutzman's name mentioned, because he did so well in the U.S. Senate race against Dan Coats.
UPDATE 3. TALKING POINTS MEMO is identifying the part-time staffer as Tracy Jackson and links to a video in which she plays the role of interviewer and Souder talks about the importance of -- wait for it -- "abstinence only" sex education.