Radel vows to be 'one of the most accessible members of Congress'

Rep. Trey Radel (R-Fla.) on Monday vowed to be one of the most accessible members of Congress. 

In an op-ed in a local Florida newspaper, Radel said he stands ready to serve his constituents. He returned to Capitol Hill last week after a months-long absence after being convicted of cocaine possession. 

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“I have been and will continue to be one of the most accessible members of Congress, personally taking your calls and emails, and, of course, visiting you in person,” Radel wrote. 

Radel had been absent from Washington for more than a month as he attended a rehab center in Florida to treat what he said was an alcohol addiction. 

The freshman lawmaker had been one of the most prolific social media users in Congress, sending out an endless stream of tweets to his followers. 

But since his conviction in November, he has sent out only five tweets. 

“Moving forward, my passion remains undaunted. My priorities are clear,” he said. “I stand ready to serve you in the House of Representatives. I don't care if you're a Democrat, a Republican or not involved in politics at all. I am here to serve our entire community.”

Radel described his treatment as ongoing and said he is remorseful for his actions, reiterating that his problem was with alcohol.

He said he and his family are dug into the community of Florida’s 19th district. 

“My wife, Amy, and I are vested here,” he said. “We will raise our kids with your kids and your grandchildren. You are not just my constituents. You're more than that. You're our neighbors, our friends and our family.”

He has not addressed whether he will run for reelection and has said it is not a thought in his mind. Several Republicans have expressed interest in seeking a primary against him, however. 

Radel represents a heavily-Republican district and should have a clear path to reelection if he survived a primary challenge.