ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) – A rural Alaska lawmaker has refused calls that he resign amid allegations of inappropriate behavior from seven women.
Rep. Dean Westlake issued a statement Tuesday evening saying he plans to stay in office. His announcement was confirmed by staff members.
The freshman Democrat is recovering from heart surgery. He says he has thought seriously about resigning and asked counsel from friends, family, native leaders, elders and God.
He says he decided to continue to work for the people of his district.
He again apologized if any encounter with him made women uncomfortable. He vowed to change his behavior and to become an ally and supporter of women going forward.
Seven women claimed he acted inappropriately around them. That led to calls from House leadership and the Alaska Democratic Party that he resign.
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