Rep. Dan Johnson's widow will run for his seat

12/14/2017 02:20 PM

Less than a day after her husband committed suicide, Rebecca Johnson announced that she will run for the 49th House District that Rep. Dan Johnson held since his 2016 election.

Rebecca Johnson announced her intent in a statement to the Associated Press and other news outlets Thursday.

She called her husband’s death a “high-tech lynching based on lies and half-truths,” referencing a report by the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting, in which a 21-year-old woman accused Dan Johnson, R-Mt. Washington, of forcibly kissing her and groping her beneath her clothes when she was 17.

Rebecca Johnson added that she has “been fighting behind my husband for thirty years and his fight will go on.”

Dan Johnson vehemently denied the accusation against him during a Tuesday news conference at his church, Heart of Fire Church.

On Wednesday, Johnson shot himself near a bridge in Bullitt County. In a Facebook post hours before his death, he again denied accusations raised in the KyCIR report and hinted that post-traumatic stress disorder compelled him to take his life.

Rebecca Johnson also disputed the allegation during Tuesday’s press conference and supported her husband’s decision not to resign after top Republican and Democrats called for him to step down. She called the accusation “bizarre” and “crazy.”

“We’re fighters,” she told reporters Tuesday when asked if she felt betrayed by fellow Republicans who called for her husband’s resignation. “They may not be fighters. We are fighters. We live real life. We deal with real issues, so we don’t know any other way to live but to fight.”

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