WASHINGTON, D.C. (WETM) – New York District 23 Congressman Tom Reed announced he will resign from Congress effective immediately.

Reed’s office issued a press release on May 10, 2022 announcing his resignation effective the same day. The announcement said that his office will continue to serve the 23rd District “through the end of the year or until a new representative is elected and sworn in. “

The Corning Republican announced in 2021 that he would not run for reelection in 2022 in light of a Washington Post article in which Nicolette Davis, a former lobbyist, alleged sexual misconduct against the five-term Congressman. Reed later apologized to Davis.

In his announcement, Reed thanked the people of Western New York and said he was leaving to do work that will have a “greater impact on our Country.” He added that “it is time for petty political posturing to end.”

Reed’s full resignation announcement can be read below:

Madam Speaker,

After almost 12 years in Congress, today is my last day. It has been an honor to serve with you all from both parties. I love this institution as it still exemplifies what is best about our government, we are the People’s house.  While I am proud that we put people before politics, there is much more to do. I am leaving to continue that work and hope to have a greater impact on our Country.  

I believe the current focus on extremism demands us to heed the words of Abraham Lincoln uttered years ago as we face a similar threat to our existence today— “a house divided cannot stand!”  But I add— “a house United will not fail.”  It is time for petty political posturing to end. Leadership must emerge And in God I trust. His divine protection will extend again if only we acknowledge and accept His love and the divine spark that exists in each of us as citizens of our great nation. 

I want to thank my family, who without their love and support I am nothing. I also thank the people who have worked for us and helped so many.  I am grateful.

My most profound appreciation is for the people of Western New York. Thank you for giving a country lawyer, the youngest of twelve, raised by a single mother whose father passed away when he was only two, the honor of representing you at the highest level. Only in America can such a dream come true. 

So, I humbly bid farewell and submit my resignation as a Member of the House. I wish you all — Godspeed!

NY23 Congressman Tom Reed

Steuben County Republican Committee Chairman Joe Sempolinski issued a statement following Reed’s announcement, saying he was putting his name forward to finish out the rest of Reed’s current term.

“As the former head district level Congressional staffer for this region, there is no one who knows it better than I do,” Sempolinski said. “As a candidate that has been in the race for over a year, there is no one who can get a special election campaign put together faster. I have already reached out to the party leadership to let them know about my interest in this position.”

Sempolinski announced his candidacy in July 2021, and Reed endorsed him in January 2022.

Political analyst, Dr. Steve Coleman says this is a surprise but goes on to say, “my view is he resigned so he could really give Joe Sempolinski a chance to run in a special election. The Steuben county chair and so I think this was strategic on his part, to help Joe Sempolinski.”

Coleman adds that this is an interesting situation because of what could happen with redistricting, but believes Governor Hochul should call for a special election.