Christopher LeeChristopherLee

What was the accusation?

In February of 2011, Republican Congressman (New York) Christopher Lee quickly resigned in response to a Gawker report that he had sent flirtatious emails to an unidentified 34 year old woman he had met on Craigslist. Lee had represented himself as a 39 year old divorced lobbyist and posted a photo of himself flexing in the mirror with her shirt removed.  The woman receiving the email discovered through an Internet search that Lee was a 46 year old Congressman who was married and had a son.  Within hours of the story breaking, Lee resigned from his position in Congress.

Key Apologia Strategies:

Mortification, Corrective Action



Transcript of Resignation on House Floor:

Chair lays before the House the following communication. The honorable, the Speaker, the House of Representatives, sir, I hereby give notice of my resignation from the United States House of Representatives, effective 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time Wednesday February 9th 2011.  Attached is the letter I submitted to Governor Andrew Cuomo. Signed sincerely, Christopher J. Lee, member of Congress.

Under Clause 5D of Rule 20, the chair announces to the House that in light of the resignation of the gentleman from New York, Mr. Lee, the whole number of the House is 434.

Christopher Lee’s Statement Posted on His Website:

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, February 9, 2010

Statement from Congressman Chris Lee (NY-26):

It has been a tremendous honor to serve the people of Western New York. I regret the harm that my actions have caused my family, my staff and my constituents. I deeply and sincerely apologize to them all. I have made profound mistakes and I promise to work as hard as I can to seek their forgiveness.

“The challenges we face in Western New York and across the country are too serious for me to allow this distraction to continue, and so I am announcing that I have resigned my seat in Congress effective immediately.


Congressman Christopher Lee (R-NY) resigns after Craigslist photos, flirting allegations emerge (2011, February 10). Washington Post.  Retrieved from:

Jaffe, M., & Parkinson, J. R. (2011, February 9). Congressman Chris Lee resigns after shirtless photo posted on internet. ABC News. Retrieved from:

O’Connor, M. (2011, February 9). Congressman Chris Lee resigns following Gawker revelation. Gawker. Retrieved from: