Rep. McCotter resigns
After what Rep. Thaddeus McCotter called "a nightmarish month," the 5 term Michigan congressman called it quits.
In a bizarre, rambling and error-riddled statement, the five-term Michigan Republican said recent events have "severed the necessary harmony between the needs of my constituency and of my family."
"As this harmony is required to serve, its absence requires I leave," he said.
"The recent event's totality of calumnies, indignities and deceits have weighed most heavily upon my family," he added. "Thus, acutely aware one cannot rebuild their hearth of home amongst the ruins of their U.S. House office, for the sake of my loved ones I must 'strike another match, go start anew' by embracing the promotion back from public servant to sovereign citizen."
The lyrical reference was to Bob Dylan's 1965 classic "It's All Over Now Baby Blue."
The resignation ends an increasing strange series of events surrounding McCotter, beginning last fall when he launched a long-shot - many said hopeless - bid at the GOP presidential nomination.
His decision to resign comes after news earlier this month that the five-term lawmaker would not wage a write-in campaign for reelection after failing to collect enough signatures to appear on the ballot.
McCotter had suggested that his campaign's failure to secure 1,000 valid signatures to be on the ballot had been the work of political sabotage. Of the 2,000 signatures submitted, reports said only a few hundred were deemed valid by Michigan state election officials.
The Michigan Attorney General has begun an investigation into the fraudulent petition signatures and McCotter says he is cooperating. But what The Hill terms "bizarre" I see as just more of the congressman's well known eccentricy. He is a brilliant inconoclast - a pro labor Republican who supported the auto bailout but who is also a strong conservative voice on budget and fiscal matters.
The resignation puts the Republican governor, Rick Snyder, in something of a bind. The Michigan primary is next month and state law requires that a special election be held to fill out the remaining weeks of McCotter's term. But that might necessitate a whole new election. The governor's office is mulling over their options.
McCotter, who formed a rock band called "The Second Amendments" was easily one of the smartest guys in Congress. Somehow, I don't think we've heard the last of him.
Thomas Lifson adds:
I am very sorry to see Rep. McCotter leaving the national stage, for now at least. He was the rare politician with a superb sense of humor, a self-deprecating attitude, and the willingness to speak his mind. These are characteristics which endear him to me, but alienate the political establishment. I have no idea what happened with his petition, but its failure to reach 1000 valid signatures is a shock.
I do hope that we have not seen the last of Thaddeus McCotter.