Former Rep. Bobby Schilling (R-Ill.) ruled out replacing disgraced Rep. Aaron Schock (R-Ill.) in Congress and backed another potential successor instead.
Schilling announced he would support Illinois GOP State Sen. Darin LaHood’s bid for Schock’s former district in a statement Saturday.
“Darin LaHood is a principled conservative, a man of great character and a true statesman,” Schilling said. “There is no doubt in my mind he will be an excellent representative in Congress for central Illinois.”
LaHood, the son of former Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, would represent Illinois’ 18th District if he wins. Schilling trumpeted LaHood’s integrity during his remarks Saturday.
“Darin will put the dignity of the human person at the center of his agenda in Washington,” he said.
“From protecting the innocent unborn to promoting working families, Darin will always do the right thing.”
Schilling, a Rock Island, Ill. native, represented his state’s 17th District in the House from 2011 to 2012. His endorsement Saturday quashed rumors he would seek Schock’s vacant seat himself.
Schock exited Congress on Thursday after delivering a farewell address. The lawmaker’s departure capped a short-lived House career begun in 2009.
“I leave here with sadness and humility,” Schock told colleagues Thursday. “For those whom I’ve let down, I’ll work tirelessly to make it up to you.”
Schock, 33, announced his resignation March 17 over concerns he had violated Congressional ethics. He now faces accusations he misspent taxpayer money on a number of non-political activities.
The Washington Post first broke news of Schock’s possible missteps last month. The lawmaker initially raised eyebrows by reportedly redecorating his House office to resemble one from “Downton Abbey,” a popular TV series.
Schock, 33, soon repaid $35,000 for the renovations, but the damage was done. Other incidents subsequently trickled out and undid the young Congressman’s budding career.
The GOP lawmaker allegedly abused tax dollars on other pursuits besides his office. Some of the allegations include a flight to a Chicago Bears football game, attending a Katy Perry concert and sending staffers to New York City.