READ: SC House Speaker Bobby Harrell's letter to state Clerk of House

READ: SC House Speaker Bobby Harrell's letter to state Clerk of House

COLUMBIA, SC (AP/WCSC) - South Carolina House Speaker Bobby Harrell has voluntarily suspended himself from his role, notifying the state's Clerk of the House of his decision in a letter.

The letter reads:

"In light of recent events this letter serves as my suspension from the South Carolina House of Representatives pursuant to 8-13-560 of the South Carolina Code effective immediately.

I am proactively taking this step because I believe it is the right decision for the South Carolina House of Representatives

I have great respect for this institution and the people of South Carolina. I have always sought to act in their best interest nad continue to do so now by taking this action and suspending myself from office.

Pursuant to House Rule 1.8, I have asked Speaker Pro Tempore, Jay Lucas, to carry out the duties of the office of Speaker of the South Carolina House of Representatives during my suspension."

Harrell was indicted Wednesday to multiple counts related to the misuse of his office for personal gain. First Circuit Solicitor David Pascoe announced the Richland County Grand Jury indicted Harrell on nine charges.

Prosecutors say the indictments are for two counts of misconduct in office (statutory and common law), six counts of using campaign funds for personal use, and one count of false reporting candidate campaign disclosures.

Gov. Nikki Haley, her Democratic challenger, Sen. Vincent Sheheen and state Democratic Party Chairman Jaime Harrison had called for Harrell to step down as speaker while the case plays out.

Harrell has maintained his innocence throughout the investigation.

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