Wu Admits to College-Age Altercation With Fellow Student

Posted October 12, 2004 at 11:08am

Rep. David Wu (D-Ore.) acknowledged Tuesday that he had displayed “inexcusable behavior” toward a female student while at Stanford University, following a report of the incident in a local newspaper.

“Twenty-eight years ago, I had a 2-year romantic relationship with a fellow college student that ended with inexcusable behavior on my part,” Wu said in a statement released by his office this morning. “As a 21-year old, I hurt someone I cared very much about.”

Wu did not elaborate on the incident, citing the desire for privacy by the other party.

According to a report in today’s Oregonian newspaper, Wu was brought in for questioning by the Stanford University police department after a 1976 altercation with the woman that left them both bruised and scratched.

Charges were not filed, and both the woman and Wu refused to comment for the Oregonian’s article. Others allegedly familiar with the incident claimed that Wu had unsuccessfully attempted to force the woman to have sex with him.

According to the paper, Wu lost his position as a resident assistant the following year but it was not directly linked to the incident.

In his statement Wu said that he was “disciplined by Stanford University for my behavior and I worked with a counselor.”

The impact on Wu’s contested race in the Portland-based 1st district against businesswoman Goli Ameri (R) was not immediately evident.

Neither the National Republican Congressional Committee nor the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chose to comment on the developments.

First elected to an open seat in 1998, Wu has won re-election comfortably in the two cycles since.

Ameri has run a solid campaign to this point but Wu appeared to be a favorite for a third term prior to these revelations.

Wu said he was “disappointed” with the paper’s decision to write a story just three weeks before the election about an incident that happened nearly 30 years ago.

“I hope that voters will judge me based on my work in Congress and the man I am today,” Wu said.