Rep. Trent Franks of Texas resigns amid Ethics investigation into possible harassment

WASHINGTON - MAY 31: U.S. Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ) testifies during a hearing before the Energy and Power Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee May 31, 2011 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. The hearing was to examine the protection of the nation's electric grid from physical and cybersecurity threats and vulnerabilities. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON — Republican Rep. Trent Franks of Arizona says he is resigning Jan. 31 amid a House Ethics Committee investigation of possible sexual harassment.

Franks says in a statement that he never physically intimidated, coerced or attempted to have any sexual contact with any member of his congressional staff.

Instead, he says, the dispute resulted from a discussion of surrogacy. Franks and his wife have 3-year-old twins who were conceived through surrogacy.

Franks says he had become familiar with the surrogacy process in recent years, and “became insensitive as to how the discussion of such an intensely personal topic might affect others.”

He said he regrets that his “discussion of this option and process in the workplace” with two female staffers made them feel uncomfortable.