Senate candidate Cal Cunningham, D-N.C., said on Friday that he cheated on his wife by sending sexually explicit text messages to the wife of an army veteran.
Cunningham’s admitted to sexting with Arlene Guzman Todd, a California public relations strategist, the day after an investigative reporter revealed the text messages, National File reported.
The text messages show that Cunningham, a husband and father of two, and Todd planned to commit adultery at some point in the fall, but it is not clear whether they carried through on their plans to “get away for a night soon.”
The disgusting and awkward text messages begin when Cunningham texts Todd, “Hey!! And you are historically sexy [kissy face]…Every day and night,” and she responds, “When can I see you? I want to kiss you.”
“And I kiss back…A lot,” he said.
Then she discusses their plans to cheat on their spouses.
“Get away for a night soon. The longer we wait the crazier fall schedules will get,” Todd said. “In the spirit of ‘I like what I like” quote on your adorable video, I operate under the ‘I want what I want”…approach and I want a night with you.”
“Sounds wonderful — I want that too!!! Very badly,” Cunningham responds.
Cunningham apologized for trying to cheat on his wife and said he will not drop out of the close race against incumbent Sen. Thom Thillis, R-N.C.
“I have hurt my family, disappointed my friends, and am deeply sorry,” he said. “The first step in repairing those relationships is taking complete responsibility, which I do. I ask that my family’s privacy be respected in this personal matter.”
“I remain grateful and humbled by the ongoing support that North Carolinians have extended in this campaign, and in the remaining weeks before this election I will continue to work to earn the opportunity to fight for the people of our state,” he said.
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee said that it stands by its endorsement of Cunningham and will continue to run ads for him.
“We are confident that he will bring the same courage and determination to the Senate as he has while serving our country in uniform,” said Lauren Passalacqua, DSCC communication director.
Todd’s husband is Jeremy Todd, an Army Sergeant First Class who served for 15 years and was deployed five times for combat. He fought in Afghanistan and Iraq.
He credited his wife for his success, USC News reported.
“My wife carried me through. She is really the superhero in all this,” he said in 2016. “The wives are the unsung heroes of the military, the spouses that deal with everything. Without good wives and family, I don’t think soldiers would be successful in their missions and everything they do.”
Guzman Todd works for a marijuana company and as a lecturer at California State University.
Cunningham himself has been a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve since 2002.
He works at the 134th Legal Operations Detachment at Fort Bragg for the U.S. Army Reserve Legal Command, where he is a Judge Advocate General Corps.
If Cunningham were active duty when he sent the text messages more than three months ago, then he could face legal action in military court.