Representative from Tennessee Scott DesJarlais is pro-life, pro-family, and a former doctor. As a doctor, he had an affair with a patient that he later pressured into getting an abortion. DesJarlais has not denied the events occurred after they were discovered due to a phone call transcript obtained by The Huffington Post. The phone call occurred in 2000 and the recording was made by DesJarlais himself.
DesJarlais tried to blame the surfacing of the transcript on his opponent in the Congressional race stating “Desperate personal attacks do not solve our nation’s problems, yet it appears my opponents are choosing to once again engage in the same gutter politics that CBS news called the dirtiest in the nation just 2 years ago.” Two years ago, DesJarlais won office due to the backing of the Tea Party and he currently leads state Senator Eric Stewart in the polls.
Two years ago, the race included charges that came from DesJarlais’ divorce from his wife Susan back in 2001. Those allegations included him holding a gun to his own mouth for hours and ‘dry firing’ a gun outside his wife’s bedroom window. DesJarlais denied those allegations at the time.
These new allegations, which DesJarlais is not denying, paint a worse picture for him. The Huffington Post reports that:
“You told me you’d have an abortion, and now we’re getting too far along without one,” DesJarlais tells the woman at one point in the call while negotiating with her over whether he’ll reveal her identity to his wife. They then discuss whether he will accompany her to a procedure to end the sort of life the congressman now describes as “sacred.”
“You told me you would have time to go with me and everything,” the woman complains.
“I said, if I could, I would, didn’t I? And I will try,” DesJarlais says. “If I can [find] time, you’re saying you still will?”
“Yeah,” the woman answers.
The two bicker over when they can meet to hash out a solution, and they make clear the nature of their relationship when DesJarlais says delaying a resolution isn’t fair to his wife.
“This is not fair to me. I don’t want you in my life,” the woman says.
“Well, I didn’t want to be in your life either, but you lied to me about something that caused us to be in this situation, and that’s not my fault, that’s yours,” the doctor responds.
“Well, it’s [your] fault for sleeping with your patient,” the woman fires back.
After arguing for a bit about who came on to whom — with the woman seeming incredulous at DesJarlais’ interpretation that she made the first move — he gets back to the abortion.
“If we need to go to Atlanta, or whatever, to get this solved and get it over with so we can get on with our lives, then let’s do it,” DesJarlais says.
“Well, we’ve got to do something soon. And you’ve even got to admit that because the clock is ticking right?” he says at another point.
DesJarlais was trying to reconcile with his wife at the time of the call. In court, he admitted to at least four affairs claiming that they had a “written agreement to date other people.”
In the call, he says “Well, I’ve been going crazy. I mean, if Susan could talk to you, she’d tell you that I’ve been psychotic for months over this. I don’t sleep at night. I mean, it’s like I’m trying to build my family back together just waiting for it to fall apart, and it’s been eating me apart.”
The transcript came to the hands of DesJarlais’ former opponent in the waning days of the last campaign. Davis said that he never actually saw the document until after the election was over, and only confirmed the authenticity of it when he talked to Susan DesJarlais about his getting purged from the voter rolls this election cycle.