August 23, 2012- A Democrat from Minnesota has dropped out of his bid for re-election only hours after announcing he would stay in the race. Rep. Kerry Gauthier had a sexual encounter at a rest stop with a boy who was only 17 years old and party leaders had requested he drop out of the race, however early in the day he defied them by saying he would remain. Nevertheless, by the end of the day he had changed his mind and officially dropped out.
Gauthier, 56, told reporters the decision to drop out had been his own following a number of conversations with leaders from the Democratic Party. He said he had changed his mind on a number of occasions about staying in the race, but the pressure became too much for him to handle.
He also said that last week he had taken an overdose of muscle relaxers that had caused him to be hospitalized and it had been a suicide attempt on his part. He had issued a statement earlier saying he was in recovery from dependency to chemicals and had only had one relapse in 30 years.
The legislator, from Duluth, is currently in his first term and said on Wednesday he would not attend a special session of the legislature on Friday to vote on a package for flood relief. He pushed hard to get help for Minnesota and his district for the floods until last week when the scandal hit and he was not seen until yesterday.