Defiant: Tarnished Sen. Ensign Won't Resign | NBC New York

Defiant: Tarnished Sen. Ensign Won't Resign

Senator who admitted affair will also seek re-election



    Nevada Sen. John Ensign stepped down from his leadership post in the Senate after admitting an extramarital affair.

    LAS VEGASRepublican Sen. John Ensign says he has no plans to resign despite his affair with a staffer's wife and his parents' $96,000 payout to the woman's family, and intends to seek re-election in 2012.

    The embattled lawmaker told the Las Vegas Sun he has received calls and e-mails of encouragement from supporters in Nevada and Washington, D.C.

    "I fully plan on running for re-election," Ensign said. "I'm going to work to earn their respect back."

    The two-term Republican senator also says his support is coming from fellow senators as well as those "on both sides" of Senate leadership. He says supporters are telling him, "Keep your head up. This thing will pass."

    Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, asked if he still supports Ensign, told the Sun, "Well, I think Senator Ensign will have to speak to those issues himself."