Texas Rep. Van Taylor withdraws from runoff over allegations of extramarital affair with 'ISIS bride'

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Texas Republican Congressman Van Taylor has withdrawn from his reelection race the day after forcing a runoff election in his primary battle after confirming reports that he had an extramarital affair. 

“About a year ago, I made a horrible mistake that has caused deep hurt and pain among those I love most in this world,” Taylor wrote in an email to supporters on Wednesday, according to Texas Tribune. “I had an affair, it was wrong, and it was the greatest failure of my life. I want to apologize for the pain I have caused with my indiscretion, most of all to my wife Anne and our three daughters.”

Congressman Van Taylor reacts to the Afghanistan debacle
(FOX)

Taylor’s announcement came hours after finishing a five-way primary with 49% of the vote which barely missed the 50% threshold that would have prevented a run-off vote on May 1.

Taylor, who is married with three children, was the subject of reports from Breitbart News and National File in the days leading up to the primary election that alleged he had paid his mistress to keep quiet about his affair while also allegedly sending her lewd text messages related to sexual activity.

A person walks to cast their ballot at the Moody Community Center on Feb. 24, 2022, in Houston. 
(Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

The reports alleged that Taylor had a relationship with Plano woman Tania Joy, who has been referred to as an “ISIS bride” due to her former marriage to an American-born ISIS fighter, outside of his marriage, and sent her $5,000 to remain silent about the affair.

Taylor was elected to represent Texas’s 3rd Congressional District in 2018 after serving as a state senator. He was widely criticized by his Republican opponents during the primary campaign for being one of 35 Republicans to vote in favor of a special commission to investigate the January 6 Capitol riot in 2021. 

UNITED STATES – DECEMBER 9: Rep. Van Taylor, R-Texas, pays respects as former Sen. Bob Dole, R-Kan., lies in state in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda on Thursday, December 9, 2021.(Photo By Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

Taylor’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Fox News.

Texas Tribune reported that Taylor has until March 16 to remove his name from the ballot, which his spokesperson said he will do, which will automatically make former County Judge Keith Self the nominee for the district. Self finished in second place in Tuesday night’s primary election with 26.5% of the vote.

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