Sex Scandal Facing Congressman From Oregon Has California Connection

PORTLAND  (AP) — Congressman David Wu, who earlier this year apologized for bizarre behavior during his most recent re-election campaign, was facing calls for his resignation on Saturday over yet another crisis — a young woman’s reported accusation that she had an “unwanted sexual encounter” with the Democrat three weeks after his election victory in November.

Wu’s spokesman, Erik Dorey, said the seven-term Democrat had a telephone conversation on Saturday with House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi about the allegation, which was first reported by The Oregonian newspaper. Dorey would not comment on the substance of the conversation

An aide to Pelosi declined Saturday to comment on Wu.

The allegation seemed to be boiling into yet another sex scandal confronting a member of Congress. It comes a month after Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., stepped down after getting caught sending suggestive pictures of himself on his Twitter account.

Late Friday, the 56-year-old Wu issued a one-sentence statement about The Oregonian’s report: “This is very serious, and I have absolutely no desire to bring unwanted publicity, attention or stress to a young woman and her family.”

Pressure was building on Wu to publicly address the allegation.

There were also calls for his resignation.

“I’m saddened to hear this news. David owes the citizens he represents a detailed explanation,” said State Rep. Brad Witt, who is running against Wu in the Democratic primary next spring. “If this accusation proves to be true, it’s time for David Wu to resign and get the help he needs.”

Another challenger of Wu in the Democratic primary, state Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian, said Saturday Wu should resign immediately.

“I think any 56-year-old man, especially a 56-year-old Congressman, that asserts himself like this on an 18-year-old girl, has got no business serving in Congress,” Avakian said at a news conference. “There is nothing that can be explained that makes this situation right. He’s got to resign.”

Former Oregon Secretary of State Bill Bradbury, also a Democrat, called on Wu to step down now.

“Obviously I think the right decision would be to resign,” Bradbury told the AP. “I felt that way (after previous reports of erratic behavior) and I feel that even more strongly now.”

Earlier this year Bradbury announced he was supporting Avakian, and at the time called Wu “damaged goods.”

Tom Chamberlain, Oregon AFL-CIO president, wouldn’t speculate on Wu’s chances to get the powerful labor group’s nod in the 2012 election, as Wu has in past elections, but said “it’s a high threshold.”

Still, Chamberlain said “it’s too early” to say whether Wu should step down.

Citing anonymous sources, The Oregonian reported that Wu told senior aides that the sexual encounter last November with the young woman in California was consensual. The paper reported Facebook notes indicate she graduated from high school in 2010 and that she registered to vote in California last August.

The paper said the woman decided not to press changes because there were no witnesses and it would have been her word against Wu’s.

The newspaper said its information came from multiple sources familiar with the allegation.

The Oregonian’s report adds new troubles for a congressman who fought accusations of strange and erratic behavior during his re-election campaign last year. Seven members of his re-election campaign quit in January because of behavior that included sending a photo of himself in a tiger costume to a staff member and an angry public speech.

Earlier this year, Wu told the AP that his erratic behavior last year was the culmination of a period of mental health challenges that began in 2008 as marital issues led toward separation from his wife. The couple’s divorce proceedings are ongoing.

In a 2004 re-election bid, Wu acknowledged a decades-old college incident in which he tried to force an ex-girlfriend to have sex.

His opponent in the general election tried to use the report from Wu’s undergraduate days at Stanford in 1976 to show Wu wasn’t fit to serve. Instead of derailing his campaign, the opponent’s tactics were regarded as unseemly, and Wu won re-election handily.

Wu and his wife separated in December 2009 for reasons that have not been disclosed. They have two children.

Oregon’s Democratic leaders were reluctant to discuss the latest allegation on Saturday.

“We’re waiting to see what happens,” Trent Lutz, executive director of the Democratic Party of Oregon, told the AP.

The Oregonian quoted sources as saying that a distraught young woman called Wu’s Portland office earlier this year and left a voicemail accusing him of an unwanted sexual encounter in Southern California three weeks after last year’s election.

The paper said the woman is the daughter of a high school friend of Wu’s who has donated to the congressman’s campaign.

Wu represents Oregon’s 1st Congressional District, which includes part of Portland and stretches northwest to the Pacific Coast.

Wu was first elected to Congress in 1998. Each election cycle he is a prime target for the Republican Party, but he keeps disproving predictions that he will lose.

He has shown an unpredictable streak that has baffled some fellow Democrats. He sided with House Republicans in 2003 and voted for President George W. Bush’s Medicare bill, then drew some attention at home for opposing now-former Gov. Ted Kulongoski, a fellow Democrat, who agreed to allow the Warm Springs tribe to build an off-reservation casino in Cascade Locks.

In a speech on the House floor in January 2007, he referred to people in the Bush White House as Klingons.

Congress has had a run of scandals that have led to resignations in recent months.

The month before Weiner’s departure, Sen. John Ensign, R-Nev., resigned in the midst of a Senate Ethics Committee investigation that was looking into steps that he took to cover up an affair with a former member of his campaign staff.

In February, Rep. Christopher Lee, R-N.Y., abruptly resigned after a gossip website reported that he had sent a shirtless photo of himself to a woman he met on Craigslist.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • rich

    ok i do not belive the sex was UNWANTED or she would have reported it and what ETHICAL issues is there the girl is of age and hes not married so whats the big deal?

  • Sex Scandal Facing Congressman From Oregon Has California Connection | Los Angeles for Me

    […] Congressman David Wu, who earlier this year apologized for bizarre behavior during his most recent re-election campaign, was facing calls for his resignation on Saturday over yet another crisis — a young woman’s reported accusation that she had an “unwanted sexual encounter” with the Democrat three weeks after his election victory in November. More from:… […]

  • Charlie

    Woo Hoo Wu,

  • Wynne

    1. What you believe is irrelevant.
    2. A large percentage of victims do not report sexual assault.
    3. Age of a victim is also irrelevant.
    4. He’s separated, not divorced, so he is very much married.

    Based on your ignorance of the facts, I seriously doubt you even know what the word “ethical” means. I hope you aren’t raising children.

    • John

      The time the so called crime occurred is relevent. After so long a time frame evidence is almost impossible. Plus if the girl was did not the sex (assuming there was any) she would have reported it right away. Plus if he is separated and both parties have filed for divorce but it is not final they may be legally married but technically divorced. Once the divorce is final it is retoactive to the date they separated. Sorry but just because you believe something does not make it a fact. Also the age of the possible victim does matter in court. If she was under 18 and had sex with Mr Wu it is rape regardless of whether she consented or not. From what I read it seems that the victim here is just after a possible money settlement. If all goes good though Mr Wu will not win reelction anbd we will have one less democrat in Congress ruining this country.

      • Dan

        “Plus if the girl was did not the sex ”

        You’re an idiot.

    • rick

      as you say he is sep which is the same as divorced its not a crime to get laid and not a crime to do it with an 18 year old and the fact the alleged victim has waited a year almost to say anything says she is not part of your LARGE PERCETAGE shes waited till now for her own reasons THIS WAS NO CRIME NOR WAS IT UNWANTED she is seeking a payday and i have 5 kids 3 of which are girls so trust me i know that no woman who is really raped would not tell SOMEONE she may not tell the cops but would tell someone and that someone would tell the cops i totally belive the ones that claim rape after a long time like this were not rape at all

      • derp

        you could not be more wrong. and i hope for your girls sake that they don’t know you think that’s a crime that brings shame to the victim, unlike many crimes. add to this that it’s the friend of her dad and you’ve got logical reasons for why she may have been to afraid to come forward. she may have told friends who told her to come forward, which led to her calling the office. notice story doesn’t say she even went to the police, but that she called the office. not the actions of somebody making something up but rather to ashamed to come forward. she wanted to let him know he’d hurt her, but didn’t want to go to police.
        1 out of 3 girls will be victim of sexual assualt in her life and most of us don’t report it. you have 3 girls you say. i truly hope that should the worst happen to one of them, they find somebody a little less cynical to talk to. i’ll bet if you asked them, and they felt they could be honest with you, they’d tell you they had friends that had been assaulted who have never reported it. and it’s fear of being judged as liars that usually help keep them quiet.

      • derp

        rick, your conclusion is once again faulty.
        if your story is true, then they had each other, didn’t they? they didn’t have the usual he said-she said backlash to worry about because each was witness as well as victim. most victims aren’t lucky enough to have someone there who can testify as to the truthfulness of their statements. they stand alone, and they’re scared in way your girls were lucky enough to not have to.

        in other articles, it’s been sad that the girl actually said that’s one reason she did not come forward. because it was her word against a big man’s and she didn’t think she would be believed. you don’t know who if anybody she told, it’s possible she told friends or family but they couldn’t convince her to come forward. do you know anything about this particular guy? he’s a friggen whack from all reports, and had she just threatened him with offer to keep mouth shut for money, chances are he’d have paid it.

        but she didn’t go to him with offer. nor did she go to police. she left message on his machine saying you hurt me and i hate you for it. sounds to me like there’s good chance that’s as far as she wanted to go. she could have made alot more money with a threat then this way, that’s only logical. especially with the hoopla about his dressing up in tiger costume and sending pics of himself to peopl….e

      • rick

        Derp i base my belife on this::: 2 of my 3 daughters will be 17 in nov (twins) i did not know about them till they were 14 their mom who i had a very short relationship with never told me anyhow i was told of them when their mom died in a crash. it took 6 months to prove i was their dad and all the other junk because her parents didnt quite belive i was the dad. i got my girls and 2 months after a aide in their school assulted them both at the same time they are extreemly close and refuse to be apart they still did not know me well we were still in the GETTING USE TO IT PHASE they came right home and told me everything so if 2 kids who dont know me well yet could tell me i refuse to belive that any other girl/woman would have trouble telling someone for a whole year just abouts so i stand by my belife this girl in this case was not forced and in fact was up for the sex and is not seeking some sort of payday

      • rick

        correction NOW SEEKING A PAYDAY

      • rick

        derp my girls were 14 touched by a aide in the school who had been at this school for the past 16 years he was the father of 4 prior students who by his account just wanted to put back into the community and school he helped out with the sports programs in the school my girls were all into sports he was VERY well respected in the school and community so telling on him was not excatly easy YES there were those who questioned my girls word as i guess your right is often the case but WHO CARES about questions i belive if you are so scared what others might question you about or doubt in your story about such things then most likely you your self know what your saying is a lie my girls went through some tough questions to include if they were sexually active outside of this case and they had been so that caught them some crud but they stuck with it and WON he is now in jail for what he did so in short if a girl/woman does not have the guts to fight it out then that to me makes her totally unbleivable

  • Jack

    Big deal… Guy likes 18 year old chicks. So what??

  • Pratt Robert

    Resign! For what. Seem that no laws were broken. We have real problems.

  • swhitS

    Sounds to me like he stepped on the elites toes.

  • GB

    Dumb a_s women ! You want to be equal to men …Get over it ! You will never be paid equal wages crying like that !

  • Donkeyy

    Your average looser politicians.

  • Timothy McGarry

    don’t eat the brown acid

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