Sen. John Ensign, whose political fortunes plummeted after he admitted to an extramarital affair with the wife of a staff member, announced today that he won’t seek a third term next year.
“I just came to the conclusion that I couldn't put my family through this,” Ensign (R-Nev.) said at Las Vegas news conference.
Ensign, who is being investigated by the Senate Ethics Committee, is the eighth senator to announce they won’t seek re-election. When he last ran for re-election in 2006, CUNA’s PAC gave his campaign $7,000.
Ensign, who admitted that his family had given the woman with whom he had an affair a gift of $96,000, faced a potentially difficult re-election. Rep. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) was ahead of him in several polls for the GOP primary. CUNA’s PAC has supported Heller in several campaigns, and gave his campaign $5,000 last year.
Ensign, a former veterinarian and hotel manager, resigned his position in the GOP leadership after revelations of the affair. He had also traveled to Iowa to explore a possible run for president.