Patterson resigns from House
Move comes after ethics committee voted for expulsion
State Rep. Daniel Patterson resigned his seat in the House on Wednesday, hours after a House Ethics Committee unanimously voted for his expulsion.
House Speaker Andy Tobin, R-Paulden, accepted Patterson's resignation letter.
"I have been forced to resign due to the fact that the House has become a very hostile work environment for me. Due to this I am no longer able to serve my constituents in the way they deserve," Patterson said in the letter.
The Ethics Committee voted unanimously earlier Wednesday to expel Patterson from the House for "disorderly behavior."
Patterson tweeted the "fix was in."
House Minority Leader Chad Campbell said with Patterson's resignation, it is time for the House move on.
"Mr. Patterson's resignation ends an ongoing distraction at the Capitol. We are moving forward and will continue to focus on the budget, creating jobs and improving education in the state," Campbell said in an email.
On Tuesday, Patterson shot back at misconduct allegations in a written response to the Ethics Committee.
The ethics report detailing those allegations, which was released last week, "fails tests of what a true independent investigation should be," Patterson wrote, and said "nearly all the claims ... are not substantiated."
Patterson left the Democratic Party last week after his own caucus moved to unseat him.
The Board of Supervisors will decide on a replacement for Patterson's seat based on the recommendation from the legislative district's precinct committee members.
Under fire from both parties, Patterson suspended his re-election campaign April 3 and said he likely would not run to keep his seat.
Patterson blasted his former Democratic colleagues as "slimy" and said, "I'm not going to fade away."
The day before, House Democrats released the findings of a report from an independent counsel hired by the Ethics Committee that claimed Patterson was verbally abusive to staff and colleagues and had threatened physical violence.
"The deep distrust, concern for, and fear of Rep. Patterson is bipartisan, bicameral (and)... broad," the report, which recommended his expulsion, said.
Patterson said the report was "prepared by political lawyers out to reach a predetermined outcome," and said it was "outrageous" that Assistant House Minority Leader Steve Farley called for his expulsion.