Dramatic exits by speakers
John W. McCormack: The Democrat’s top aides were under investigation for influence peddling when he announced his retirement in 1970. McCormack had denied any knowledge of the charges and planned to run for a 23rd term before was forced out.
Jim Wright: The only speaker to be forced by scandal to leave office before the end of his term, he resigned in 1989. He was accused of accepting gifts from a developer arranging bulk sales of his book, “Reflections of a Public Man,” to circumvent the House limits on outside earned income. In a farewell speech on the House floor, the Democrat admitted to making mistakes in judgment, but denied breaking any House rules.
Newt Gingrich: Hobbled by an investigation of his financial and fundraising activities, he was reprimanded and fined in 1997. Then his Republican colleagues, including Boehner, tried to overthrow him. Gingrich thought Republicans’ 1998 effort to impeach President Clinton would gain the GOP up to 30 seats in the 1998 elections. Instead, Democrats gained five. Facing a challenge for the job, Gingrich soon quit.