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GOP Rep. Tim Murphy resigns after abortion scandal

Pennsylvania Rep. Tim Murphy (R) has tendered his resignation from Congress, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said Thursday. Murphy had been enmeshed in scandal after it was revealed that he had asked an extramarital affair partner to consider terminating a pregnancy; the congressman is staunchly pro-life and has been endorsed by organizations like the Family Research Council.

"It was Dr. Murphy's decision to move on to the next chapter of his life, and I support it," Ryan said in a statement announcing Murphy's decision. "We thank him for his many years of tireless work on mental health issues here in Congress, and his service to the country as a Naval Reserve officer." Murphy's resignation will be effective Oct. 21.

Murphy had disclosed his affair with Shannon Edwards, whom he called a "personal friend," last month, and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported earlier this week that in January he asked her to consider getting an abortion amid a pregnancy scare, which turned out to be unfounded. On Wednesday evening, Murphy had announced he would retire at the end of his term.

Also this week, Murphy voted in favor of a bill that would ban abortions after 20 weeks — a piece of legislation he co-sponsored, and which passed the House.