Josh Duggar, executive director of the lobbying arm of the anti-gay Family Research Council, resigned on Thursday (21 May).
He has admitted to sexually abusing five young girls, including some of his sisters, when he was a teenager.
Duggar is one of the members of the evangelical Christian family that stars in the TLC reality series 19 Kids and Counting. He is one of the 19 children of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar and a married father of three himself.
‘Twelve years ago, as a young teenager I acted inexcusably for which I am extremely sorry and deeply regret,’ Duggar said in a statement. ‘I hurt others, including my family and close friends.’ … I would do anything to go back to those teen years and take different actions.’
According to TMZ, the family patriarch contacted police about the incidents but his son was not charged. After another incident nine months later, the parents consulted with church elders and the son was sent to a treatment program.
‘I confessed this to my parents who took several steps to help me address the situation,’ Duggar stated.
His parents and wife have also issued statements on the family’s official Facebook page.
Duggar, 27, cannot be charged now because the statute of limitations has run out.
The Family Research Council from which he resigned advocates and lobbies for socially conservative policies and opposes and lobbies against LGBTI rights such as same-sex marriage and adoption.
Duggar had one of the most visible positions and in recent days posted photos on social media of himself with Republican presidential hopefuls Mike Huckabee and Scott Walker.
In 2010, the Southern Poverty Law Center classified the FRC as an anti-gay hate group.