Five years after resigning as a U.S congressman, Aaron Schock publicly declared he is gay in a statement he posted to Instagram.
“I am gay,” the post starts.
“I offer my story as one person’s experience. I’ve come to believe it is, in some respects, just a more public version of a difficult and ultimately, not optimistic, journey familiar to many LGBTQ people,” he stated.
As a Republican member of congress from 2009 to 2015, Schock voted against several pieces of legislation that were thought to be positive for the LGBT community, the New York Daily News reports.
Schock even earned a zero on the 113th congressional scorecard that measures support for equality. He addressed his previous political positions in the statement, throwing a slight jab at Hilary Clinton and President Barack Obama.
“In 2008, as a Republican running in a conservative district, I took the same position on gay marriage held by my party’s nominee, John McCain,” Schock said. “That position against marriage equality, though, was also then held by Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama as well.”
“That fact doesn’t make my then position any less wrong, but it’s sometimes easy to forget that it was leaders of both parties who for so long wrongly understood what it was to defend the right to marry.”
Schock’s statement ended on an optimistic note, saying he’s looking forward to the future and “ready to write the next chapter of my life.”