Former U.S. Senator Pete Domenici admitted to the Albuquerque Journal that he fathered a child outside his marriage more than three decades ago.
Domenici made the admission, the Journal reports, “because he anticipated someone else was about to make the story public.”
Domenici had a child with Michelle Laxalt, the son of former U.S. Sen. and Nevada governor Paul Laxalt.
The child is now an attorney in Nevada.
Domenici decided not to run for a seventh turn in Senate in 2008 after a health scare. Domenici has still been a prominent face in Washington D.C. in his role at the Bipartisan Policy Center seeking debt reduction.
Domenici took responsibility, but did admit that he had kept he secret even from his family until a few months ago. From the Journal:
“My past action has caused hurt and disappointment to my wife, children, family and others,” he said. “For that I am solely responsible.”
Domenici, who continues to live in Washington, D.C., with his wife, said his family “has been aware of these events for several months.”
From the Washington Post:
In her own statement to the paper, Michelle Laxalt said that she asked Domenici to “agree that this remain private between the two of us.” She raised the son, Adam Paul Laxalt, as a single mother. According to Virginia voter registration records, he was born in August 1978, 35 years ago. Michelle Laxalt would have been 24 at the time; Domenici would have been 46.
“Given the fact that both my father and the father of my child were United States senators, I felt strongly that I would make this choice according to my values and would not seek advice, input or permission,” she said. Adam Laxalt is not commenting on his parents’ relationship.