Rep. Radel: Substance Abuse Never Interfered With My Work

Image: Rep. Radel: Substance Abuse Never Interfered With My Work

Tuesday, 31 Dec 2013 04:08 PM

By Courtney Coren

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Republican Rep. Trey Radel of Florida says he plans to return to work after completing drug and alcohol rehabilitation, but emphasizes that his substance abuse never interfered with his work in Congress.

"It never interfered with my congressional obligations," Radel wrote on Facebook on Sunday. "However, it led me down a path that chipped away at my relationship with my wife, my child, and God."

The freshman congressman was arrested in October after purchasing cocaine from an undercover agent of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration in Washington.

On Nov. 20, he pleaded guilty to the charges against him and entered a voluntary rehabilitation program for treatment of alcoholism and drug abuse.

"My recovery is under way and ongoing," he said. "I have and will continue to build a support system to rely on for the rest of my life. While in a voluntary rehabilitation program, I began a step-by-step process that will aid me in recovery one day at a time."

He said his main struggle is with alcohol.

"To be clear, alcohol is the problem for me," the Florida Republican said. "It was selfishly fun, but became an issue when it led to poor choices and missed opportunities."

While he made it clear in his Facebook post that he plans to remain in office, Florida Republican leaders have said they want Radel to resign.

At least two Republican candidates have said they are ready to run in a special election if needed.

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