Yesterday embattled Republican congressman Tim Murphy announced that he would not be seeking re-election next year. This came about after that Pittsburgh Post-Gazette published damaging text messages on Tuesday that he had been exchanging with his mistress.

Damaging text message exchanges released

A January 25 text message between the congressman and Shannon Edwards was particularly harmful to the Republican. The text from Edwards was unhappy about Murphy posting his pro-life stance on the internet after he had asked her the previous week to get an abortion when he thought she was pregnant.

A response from Murphy said that his staff wrote the messages, saying “I read them and winced, I told staff don't write anymore.” Murphy had to acknowledge his affair, as Edwards made it public during her recent divorce proceedings with her husband.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette also published a six-page memorandum evidently written by the congressman's chief of staff that is dated June 8. In it, she accuses Murphy of treating his staff members with “threats, anger, and harassment.”

Revelation comes at bad time for Murphy

According to the Washington Post, these text message came out the same day that the House Of Representatives passed new Republican legislation involving abortion. This new legislation would make it a crime to have an abortion after 20 weeks of fetal development.

To make this look even worse for Representative Murphy, he is a member of the House's Pro-Life Caucus, was one of the co-sponsors of the bill and he voted in favor of it.

Murphy's political career

In a brief statement released via his office, Murphy said that he will now “take personal time to seek help as my family and I continue to work through our personal difficulties.” However, neither the congressman or his office directly commented on the report by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazzete.

The 65-year-old Murphy will be declining a ninth-term in the House of Representatives by not seeking re-election. He has represented the 18th district of Pennsylvania since 2003 when he won the Republican primary unopposed and easily defeated his Democratic challenger.

Prior to his time in the House, Murphy served as a member of the Pennsylvania Senate for the 37th district from 1997 until 2003. He also has a Ph.D. in psychology, working as a practicing psychologist and assistant professor at the Univerity of Pittsburgh before his political career.