Campaign

Oklahoma Democrat drops congressional bid after sleepover controversy

U.S. House candidate Abby Broyles
AP/Garett Fisbeck, file

Democratic Oklahoma House candidate Abby Broyles announced on Thursday she would be dropping her congressional bid following an incident last month at a Valentine’s Day weekend sleepover in which she reportedly used profanities toward several girls.

“Today, I am ending my campaign for Oklahoma’s 5th Congressional District to focus on myself and my happiness. This decision hasn’t been easy to make; I got into politics because I wanted to help people,” Broyles said in a statement posted on Medium.

The Oklahoma candidate said that she had been struggling with her mental health following news coverage of her reportedly using profanities toward several girls while at a sleepover, with reports saying she called one girl a “Hispanic f—er,” another a “judgy f—er” and one other an “acne f—er” while intoxicated.

She said that she had told a friend earlier this month that she “took whatever I had. I just wanted it all to end” and said that close to two weeks after the scandal broke, she had taken sleeping pills and “drank heavily” one morning in an effort to end her life.

“I’d received death threats, got obliterated by cyber cowards hiding behind their computer screens and furiously typing on their keyboards, and got bombarded with prank calls (from people who found my number online) telling me to drop out of politics and go kill myself,” Broyles wrote. 

“The public barrage was the result of a night I honestly can’t remember that took place while I assisted in chaperoning a preteen sleepover with a close friend (now former) from law school.”

The Democratic candidate claimed that she did not remember what had happened the night of the sleepover and alleged her then-friend “threw me under a bus to superficially avoid further interrogation from her ex-husband during their custody battle.”

She said she would be dropping out of the Oklahoma congressional race to focus on her mental health and happiness, and said she checked herself into rehab several weeks ago.

Broyles has previously apologized for the comments she made, but asserted in an interview with NBC affiliate KFOR, whom she once worked for as a journalist, that “I would never ever say anything hurtful. I’ve never, ever would say something hurtful like those things. And that’s why I know I was not in my right mind.”

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