WASHINGTON -- Rep. Daniel Crane, R-Ill., who admitted 'I made a mistake' in having a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old congressional page, is home with his family, who he has asked for forgiveness.
Crane left for his Danville, Ill., home Thursday a few hours before a House committee reported its investigation had found that Crane, 47, had a sexual relationship with a female page in 1980. It recommended a House reprimand, the lightest of three possible penalties.
'I'm sorry that I made a mistake,' Crane said in a written statement. 'I'm human and in no way did I violate my oath of office. I only hope my wife and children will forgive me.'
Crane refused to talk to reporters after arriving in downstate Illinois.
'He obviously wants to be with his family at a time like this,' his attorney, James Bierbower, told reporters shortly after the report was issued.
Asked if Crane would have to leave Congress, he replied, 'I would not think that he would.'
Crane's press secretary, William Mencarow, said today on ABC's 'Good Morning America' he doubts Cranew will resign.
'I don't believe he will. The question has not come up in conversations he's had with me. And frankly, looking at the situation, although it is a bad situation, no law has been broken. His oath of office has not been violated and the congressman intends, as far as I know, to remain a candidate for office for another term,' Mencarow said.
'Our constituents, I would hope, are mature enough to not look at a single incident in a man's life but look at his record for the past five years ... look at his record and not judge a man on one single incident.'
Menacrow said reaction from the district had been 'mixed. Naturally, it's a little early to get a good reading. Most of the calls have been calls of support.'
Crane and his wife, Judy, have six children.
During the 1982 campaign for his third House term, Crane used his family extensively in advertisements. The ads included pictures of his little daughter running into his arms and family activities.
Rep. Phil Crane, R-Ill., brother of the congressman, said his 'sympathy goes out to Danny and I want to express my compassion for his family.'
'He made a mistake. This is a personal matter between Danny, his wife and children and God Almighty,' he said in a statement.
House Republican Leader Robert Michel of Illinois said he was saddened an Illinois congressman had been cited by the committee. His press secretary said Michel probably would vote for the reprimand.
Phil King, who lives in nearby Urbana, Ill., said the report made Crane appear 'pretty hypocritical.'
'Needless to say, I'm somewhat aghast,' King said. 'Here's a guy who campaigned as a staunch family man and repeated time and time and time again he didn't like being in WLINE:By n.'
The committee report included excerpts from an interview with the page. In them, she said she had sexual relations with Crane between three and five times in his Virginia apartment. She indicated it was voluntary.
'It was my decision as much as his,' she said.
She said the relationship stemmed from a friendly wager over the outcome of a basketball game.
Crane a month ago wrote to Republican leaders in his Illinois district to tell them he would run for a fourth term, press secretary Bill Mencarow said.
In running for his third term, Crane was firmly against abortion, supported prayer in public schools, backed a strong military and said that votes to reduce federal spending were a key to improving the economy.
Tom Lindley, an Urbana attorney, who is running for the Democratic nomination for Crane's seat in Illinois' 19th House district, he was 'more than a little surprised and a little disappointed.' He said he would not run a negative campaign.