Joe Barton, the racist Republican Texas congressman who found himself in hot water after a nude photo of him surfaced online, will not seek re-election, Barton’s office confirmed to CNN Thursday.
In a statement, Barton wrote, “I am announcing today that I will not seek re-election in 2018. To the people of the 6th District, thank you for your support and friendship.”
The statement added that while Barton has been very proud of his “public record and the many accomplishments,” it is “time to step aside and let there be a new voice.”
Barton’s message did not mention the fallout from the nude image revelation. The photo surfaced last week from an anonymous Twitter account. Sarah Dodd of Dodd Communications, who is helping Barton respond to the image, confirmed to CNN that the photo is of him.
Last week, Barton apologized for not using “better judgment” while separated from his wife and in consensual relationships with women. Dodd told CNN that Barton did not release the image himself and does not know who did.
“It’s really a violation of his privacy,” she said.
Barton, the longest serving member of the Texas House delegation, had previously announced plans to seek re-election to Congress earlier this month.