NORTH TEXAS (CBS11) – New political troubles are facing veteran 6th District Republican Congressman Joe Barton.
A Republican activist from Arlington, Kelly Canon, revealed sexually suggestive private Facebook messages she says came from the lawmaker four and five years ago.
During an interview Wednesday afternoon, Canon said, “I went wow. But I’m thinking that’s just Joe because everybody always says that’s just Joe.”
In one message June 13, 2012 after midnight, Barton asks, “So that means u r wearing a tank top only.. and no panties? Right now?”
Canon said, “Ok, that’s enough. You know my attire! Good night…”
Barton said “Answer me miss evasive and then u can ask me if u wish waiting…”
In a message dated October 2, 2013, Barton told Canon, “Men are men.. and u r definitely a sexy woman.”
Canon replied, “All the good ones are married…”
Barton said, “I don’t know about good.. but I am married.”
Canon answered, ‘Well, that means you’re one of the “good” ones, then! with a smiley face.
Barton said, “thank u”
Canon said, “just calling em as I see em!”
Barton responded, “But.. I am not thinking good thoughts at this moment.. blush”
Canon says she’s coming forward now for a reason: “I hope it will lead to others coming forward because I can’t believe I’m the only one. But if I am, it’s kind of weird. But if I’m not the only one, I want them to come forward too. I could have done this anonymously, but I didn’t.”
Barton’s spokeswoman didn’t return our call seeking comment.
But Barton told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram that he did have the exchange with Canon, but nothing more.
Canon says she never had any relationship with Barton.
When asked what she wants Barton to do, Canon replied, “Step down, resign, not run again. That’s my message to him as strongly as I can make it.”
He says it was taken during a consensual sexual relationship he had with another woman and while he was separated from his wife.
Some consider the photo’s publicity an act of revenge porn and Barton has said the Capitol Police Department is investigating.
On Wednesday afternoon, Republican State Senator Konni Burton of Fort Worth issued a statement calling on Barton to resign.
A day earlier, Tarrant County GOP Cbair Tim O’Hare urged Barton to step down by the end of the year.
Also Wednesday, Ellis County GOP Chair Randy Bellomy issued a statement that said in part, Barton’s “lifestyle is inconsistent with Republican ideals, and he has brought disgrace not only to Ellis County and the 6th Congressional District, but also to the people of Texas and this great nation.”
Barton’s spokeswoman has previously said he would not be stepping down and would be running for re-election.
But according to the Texas Republican Party, Barton has not filed paperwork to run for re-election.
Republican Jake Ellzey of Midlothian, who has served on the Texas Veterans Commission, has filed to run for the seat Barton has held since 1985.
Canon says she attended a meeting with other constituents Monday night in which Barton apologized for the photo.
Canon says many in the room told him to resign, but that Barton said he wanted to run for one more term so he could redeem his name.