BATON ROUGE, La. — The married representative who refused to leave office after he was seen kissing a female aide on grainy security footage changed course Monday, announcing that he would run for reelection despite the scandal and calls from the GOP leadership for his resignation.
Representative Vance McAllister said in April after the video was posted on the website of a Louisiana newspaper that he wouldn’t seek another term. But two months later, the freshman representative said he will be on the Nov. 4 ballot as a candidate for Louisiana’s Fifth District.
‘‘Without a doubt this decision comes after much thought and prayer,’’ McAllister said in a statement. ‘‘This district has been home to me and my family all of my life. I know the needs of this congressional district very well. I also know that this district needs a strong, conservative voice in Congress.’’
In an interview, McAllister said he received an outpouring of encouragement from people in the district urging him to run, but he said the strongest support came from his wife, Kelly. ‘‘She sees the work that goes into it every day, and she’s telling me that I really should,’’ he said. ‘‘She was a strong advocate and supporter of wanting me to really consider.’’
The congressman, who ran on a platform of faith and family, apologized for a ‘‘personal failure’’ after the security tape showed him kissing the married aide in his congressional office. She later resigned.
McAllister, who has held the congressional seat for less than year, said he won’t spend time discussing the video scandal during his campaign.