WASHINGTON (WTXF/AP) - Democratic Rep. Chaka Fattah of Pennsylvania has changed his mind and will resign from the House immediately following his conviction on charges of racketeering, fraud and money laundering.
His letter to House Speaker Paul Ryan says, “Upon reflection, I hereby make official my resignation from the U.S. House of Representatives effective immediately.”
Wednesday, Fattah had said he’d resign effective Oct. 3, the day before his sentencing.
He said a later resignation would’ve provided for an orderly transition. “However, out of respect for the entire House Leadership, and so as not to cause a distraction from the House’s work for the people, I have changed my effective date.”
The congressman was convicted Tuesday in a racketeering case that largely centered on efforts to repay an illegal $1 million campaign loan.
His lawyers had argued that the schemes were engineered without Fattah's knowledge by two political consultants who pleaded guilty in the case.
Since then, Ryan said Fattah had betrayed the trust of the House and his constituents. He also said he hoped Democratic leaders would join him in calling for Fattah's immediate resignation.
The 59-year-old Democrat had been in Congress since 1995, but he lost his April primary bid for another term top Dwight Evans.