Kerry Gauthier, a Minnesota State Legislator, who was discovered participating in a sexual act with a 17-year-old boy at a rest stop earlier this month, has now abandoned his re-election bid for the Minnesota House of Representatives.
Since the news of the scandal broke, Gauthier had been insisting he would stay in the race, despite pleas from his DFL (Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party) leadership to drop-out, but he has now told the Associated Press, “I changed my mind. Too much. It’s just too much.”
According to a recent column at the New York Daily News, Gauthier also talked about a 30-year “chemical dependency” and he mentioned “one relapse”, although the nature of the addiction is not yet known. He is insisting that he will stay in office to serve out his term, despite calls from fellow party members to resign immediately. However, Gauthier did say we will skip an upcoming special session of the Minnesota State House of Representatives, because he feels as if his presence would be a “distraction”.
This leaves the DFL a massive headache, because it is too late to replace Gauthier on the ticket. They’ll likely have to run a write-in candidate, which could make this previously “safe” district, a more competitive one.
This hasn’t been the first suggestion to support write-in, third party candidates in the news lately. Recently, Sarah Palin suggested she would endorse Sarah Steelman for senator in Missouri, in the wake of the Rep. Todd Akin scandal.