London, Feb 10 (ANI): Chris Lee, a married Republican congressman from New York state, has quit amid media reports he flirted online with a woman and sent his shirtless photograph to her.
46-year-old Lee, who has one son, was first elected to the US House of Representatives in 2008 and then elected in November for his second two-year term.
In a statement on his website, he said he regretted harming his family, staff and constituents.
"I deeply and sincerely apologise to them all," the BBC quoted Lee as saying.
Republicans gained control of the House in the November mid-term elections.
"The challenges we face in western New York and across the country are too serious for me to allow this distraction to continue, and so I am announcing that I have resigned my seat in Congress effective immediately," he said.
Lee stood down hours after news and gossip website Gawker.com posted e-mail correspondence it said had been sent between the congressman and a 34-year-old single woman he met on the classifieds site Craigslist.
The woman, who has not been identified, had posted a note in the "women seeking men" section saying she was looking for an attractive and "financially and emotionally secure" man aged 30 to 40, Gawker reported.
In the e-mails, Lee - who used his real name and e-mail address - described himself inaccurately as a 39-year-old divorced lobbyist.
He said he was a "fit fun classy guy", and sent a photograph of himself posing shirtless in dark slacks in front of a mirror, flexing a bicep, according to the report. (ANI)