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“I want to be clear that I didn’t do anything wrong, but I also don’t want the taxpayers to be on the hook for this.” That is what embattled Rep. Blake Farenthold, R-Texas, said last month when he promised to repay the $84,000 made in a settlement to a former aide who had accused him of sexual harassment and other improper conduct. He told a TV station on Dec. 4 that he would take out a personal loan and probably give a check to House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., later that week.

Given the tawdry nature of his time in Congress, it comes as no surprise that he has failed to make good on that promise. The inexplicable excuse was that on the advice of counsel he was waiting to see what changes the House would make to the Congressional Accountability Act before repaying the treasury. Here’s a better idea:  Keep the money, but do your constituents and Congress a favor and resign immediately. Farenthold’s continued service is an embarrassment and discredits the claims of Republican leaders that they won’t tolerate sexual harassment.

Farenthold announced he would not run for re-election, acknowledging his “constituents deserve better” than the way he has conducted himself in office. He got that right, yet there have been few demands from members of his party to resign, though Ryan still thinks he should repay the $84,000. That forbearance is a disappointing contrast with Democrats who properly signaled in the case of now-former Rep. John Conyers Jr., D-Mich., that no tolerance for sex harassment means no tolerance.

FROM AN EDITORIAL IN THE WASHINGTON POST