Former Congresswoman Katie Hill Denies Pelosi, Democratic Leaders Asked Her to Resign During Scandal

Former House Representative Katie Hill wrote in a New York Times op-ed published Saturday that her colleagues in the Democratic Party did not ask her to resign last October, but that she gave up her seat in Congress of her own volition.

Hill was elected in 2018 to represent California's 25th congressional district in Washington, D.C. She was one of the youngest women as well as California's first openly bisexual person to be elected to Congress, reported the Times. However, she left her office in November, after leaked nude photographs of her were published without her consent on the conservative website RedState and then in the British tabloid The Daily Mail. The stories alleged that she had had an affair with a campaign staffer. Current rules prohibit lawmakers from having sexual relationships with staff aides.

In the op-ed for the Times, Hill recounted the fallout after the photos of her were published, which she wrote inspired people to stalk her family and threaten her supporters as well as caused her to contemplate suicide. She traced the succession of events and her mindset from when she first found out that the photos were published to her final speech on the House floor on October 31.

Hill dismissed the claim that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi or other leaders in the Democratic Party specifically asked her to relinquish her congressional seat. Instead, she wrote that such speculation "could not be further from the truth."

"In fact, one of the most difficult moments during my resignation process was my phone call to the Speaker, a woman I admire more than anyone and whom I had come to love," Hill wrote. "She told me I didn't have to do this, that the country needed me and that she wished I hadn't made this decision, but she respected me and what I felt I needed to do. I told her what I told everyone else when I announced my resignation: that it was the right thing to do."

As reported by The Hill news website (unaffiliated with the former congresswoman), Pelosi had previously said that it was Hill's own decision to resign from her position in the House, and said that she was "sad" to see her go.

Hill noted in the op-ed that she will continue to "fight" even after resigning and facing thoughts of suicide. She has remained vocal about issues in the government; namely, she has expressed support for the impeachment of President Donald Trump.

"I don't know exactly what's ahead for me," she wrote, "and I know there's a lot more pain ahead. But I'm in the fight, and I'm glad it's not all over after all."

Please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255 if you need help.

Katie Hill Speech
Katie Hill, then a candidate for Congress, speaks to supporters at her election night party in California's 25th Congressional district on November 6, 2018 in Santa Clarita, California. Mario Tama/Getty