Rep. Jeff Hoover, Kentucky’s former House Speaker, on Monday said he thanks God for “the disruption and problems in my life over the past few weeks and my failings,” and said that he likely suffered a “light heart attack” three weeks ago.
Hoover, who resigned as House Speaker after news broke that he secretly settled a sexual harassment claim with a member of his staff, made the comments in a lengthy Facebook post on Monday.
“I believe that bumps in the road along life’s journey are divine appointments,” Hoover wrote in the post. “I also believe one cannot grow spiritually and mature spiritually without some pain along the journey. And most importantly, I believe God’s grace is sufficient for anything we face. In our weakness, we can rest in His strength.”
Hoover stepped down as House Speaker on Nov. 5, when he acknowledged that he had secretly settled allegations of sexual harassment made by a legislative employee. While Hoover apologized for “inappropriate” actions, he did not admit any wrongdoing and said there is not a culture of harassment in the capitol. Three other Republican members of the general assembly and the House Republican chief of staff were also involved in the settlement.
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Hoover’s resignation came a day after Gov. Matt Bevin called on those involved in the settlement to resign.
In his Facebook post Monday, Hoover once again apologized.
“The three most important things in this life are faith, family and friends, and our health,” he said. “I know I must refocus and recommit myself, first and foremost, to my faith, then to my family and friends, and my health. I know and have admitted I have fallen short and for any disappointment or embarrassment to my friends, I am truly sorry.”
The week after he stepped down as Speaker, Hoover was admitted to the hospital for testing on heart related issues. In his post, Hoover briefly mentioned the health episode.
“Three days and two nights in a hospital will certainly get your attention as well,” Hoover said.
Along with his health, Hoover said he was taking time to focus on his family, his friends and his faith. In the post, he also thanked his family and others who have contacted him.
“To the literally hundreds and hundreds who have sent emails, text messages, cards, I cannot thank you enough. I know I have not been able to respond to everyone as of yet, but please know, you reaching out has been such a blessing to me,” Hoover wrote. “A person really finds out who his true friends are when he goes thru adversity. I am blessed beyond measure with an awesome family and so, so many friends.”
Hoover still represents the 83rd District in the House of Representatives, which includes Clinton, Cumberland, and Russell counties and part of Pulaski County.
House Republicans have promised to investigate sexual harassment at the Capitol and are expected to release the first stage of their investigation this week.