The American conservative blogosphere is in a tizzy over the sudden resignation of Republican Rep. John Katko, who resigned Monday night amid revelations that he had been in contact with Russian intelligence during the 2016 election campaign.
In a statement, Katko said he had decided to step down from the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and that he would leave office in March 2021.
The resignation comes less than a month after Katko had a tumultuous tenure in the House.
Katko was the first Republican member to resign from Congress in nearly two decades.
Katko, a former military man who served in the U.S. Air Force for nine years and then served two years as a member of the House Armed Services Committee, was appointed to the House Intelligence Committee in January 2021.
He is the longest-serving member of Congress in its history.
Katzos predecessor, Rep. Mike Pompeo, was the chairman of the Intelligence Committee from 2003 to 2008.
Katzos resignation came as House Democrats were considering impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump, the former Republican presidential candidate who was elected in 2016.
In the wake of Katkos resignation, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Katko should have resigned long before the investigations into Russia’s role in the 2016 campaign were even underway.
“The Russian hacking scandal is bigger than John Katzo,” Pelosi said.
“It’s bigger than Congressman Katko.
This is about the future of our democracy.”
House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) speaks to reporters during a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, May 19, 2021.
House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi says former Rep. Rep. Jim Katko (D) should have stepped down long before Congress was investigating Russia’s involvement in the presidential election.
Pelosi, who was the lone Democrat to vote for Katko’s impeachment, says Katko resigned to allow for more thorough investigation of the scandal.