Illinois Republican Rep. Aaron Schock announced his resignation on Tuesday following multiple reports regarding the congressman’s deficient accounting practices and numerous controversial expenditures.
In his statement, Schock said that the questions about his spending have made it “too difficult” for him to continue to serve the 18th District :
“Today, I am announcing my resignation as a Member of the United States House of Representatives effective March 31st.
“I do this with a heavy heart. Serving the people of the 18th District is the highest and greatest honor I have had in my life. I thank them for their faith in electing me and letting me represent their interests in Washington. I have given them my all over the last six years. I have traveled to all corners of the District to meet with the people I’ve been fortunate to be able to call my friends and neighbors.
“But the constant questions over the last six weeks have proven a great distraction that has made it too difficult for me to serve the people of the 18th District with the high standards that they deserve and which I have set for myself.
“I have always sought to do what’s best for my constituents and I thank them for the opportunity to serve.”
Multiple news outlets reported that Schock resigned without first holding a discussion with Republican leaders.
Politico reported that Schock’s purchases, including using office budget funds for the purpose of redecorating his congressional office to look similar to the set of popular PBS show “Downton Abbey” and using $15,000 of government funds to spend on private flights, came under national scrutiny.
Schock has provided reimbursements to taxpayers and the government for some of his expenditures and is now facing an investigation by the Office of Congressional Ethics.
When asked earlier this month if his spending may be in violation of federal regulations Schock responded “Well, I certainly hope not.”
According to Politico, Schock was asked less than 24 hours ago about mileage reimbursements he received. The congressman had billed the government as well as his campaign for a large number of miles allegedly driven between January 2010 and July 2014 in his Chevrolet Tahoe.
According to Politico, “When Schock transferred the SUV to an Illinois dealership in 2014, it had 81,860 miles on the odometer, the documents show. However, from January 2010 to the end of July 2014, he billed the federal government for 123,131 miles on his personal vehicle. During the same period, the Republican billed his “Schock for Congress” campaign account and GOP Generation Y Fund, his leadership political action committee, for an additional 49,388 miles. Altogether, Schock sought reimbursement for 172,520 miles on his car, despite the fact that he signed documents that certified the vehicle traveled less than half that distance.”
Schock will remain in office until March 31st.