Wayne Levere Hays
was an American politician whose strong rule of the House Administration Committee extended to even the smallest items. In the mid-1970s, lawmakers avoided crossing Hays for fear that he would shut off the air conditioning in their offices. He resigned from Congress after a much-publicized sex scandal in 1976.
Hays graduated from Ohio State University
The Ohio State University, commonly referred to as Ohio State, is a public research university located in Columbus, Ohio. It was originally founded in 1870 as a land-grant university and is currently the third largest university campus in the United States...
in 1933. He served as mayor of Flushing, Ohio
Flushing is a village in Belmont County, Ohio, United States. It is part of the Wheeling, West Virginia Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 900 at the 2000 census.-Geography:Flushing is located at ....
, from 1939 to 1945 and simultaneously served in the Ohio state senate in 1941 and 1942. Starting in 1945 he served a four-year term as Commissioner of Belmont County
Belmont County is a county located in the U.S. state of Ohio. It is part of the Wheeling, West Virginia Metropolitan Statistical Area. As of 2010, the population was 70,400. Its county seat is St. Clairsville...
. He was a member of the Army Officers’ Reserve Corps from 1933 until called to active duty as a second lieutenant on December 8, 1941, with a medical discharge in August 1942.
Hays, a Democrat, was elected to the 81st Congress
The Eighty-first United States Congress was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, composed of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives...
in 1948, and was subsequently elected to thirteen succeeding Congresses. He was chairman of the powerful Committee on House Administration
The United States House Committee on House Administration deals with the general administration matters of the United States House of Representatives.-Jurisdiction:...
Hays received 5 votes for president at the 1972 Democratic National Convention
The 1972 Democratic National Convention was the presidential nominating convention of the Democratic Party for the 1972 presidential election. It was held at Miami Beach Convention Center in Miami Beach, Florida on July 10–13, 1972....
without campaigning for the office. In 1976 Hays ran for the party's nomination for President as a favorite son
A favorite son is a political term.*At the quadrennial American national political party conventions, a state delegation sometimes nominates and votes for a candidate from the state, or less often from the state's region, who is not a viable candidate...
candidate in the Ohio primary.
In May 1976, the Washington Post
broke the story quoting Elizabeth Ray
Elizabeth Ray was the central figure in a much publicized sex scandal in 1976 that ended the career of U.S. Rep. Wayne Hays ....
, Hays' former secretary, saying that Hays hired her on his staff, and later gave her a raise as staff of the House Administration Committee for two years, in order to serve as his mistress. Hays had divorced his wife of 38 years just months prior, and married his veteran Ohio office secretary, Pat Peak, in early 1976, shortly before the scandal broke. Ostensibly a secretary, Ray admitted: "I can't type. I can't file. I can't even answer the phone." She even "let a reporter listen in as the Ohio congressman told her on the phone that his recent marriage (to another former secretary) would not affect their arrangement.".Time Magazine
reported, "Liz chose to tell her story after Hays decided to marry Pat Peak and did not invite her. 'I was good enough to be his mistress for two years but not good enough to be invited to his wedding,' she pouted." Three days later, Hays admitted to most of the allegations on the House floor, denying only "that Miss Ray's federal salary was awarded solely for sexual services. She was not, insisted Hays, 'hired to be my mistress.'" He resigned as chairman of the Committee on House Administration on June 18, 1976, and then resigned from Congress on September 1, 1976.
Hays served one term, from 1979 to 1981, as member of the Ohio House of Representatives
The Ohio House of Representatives is the lower house of the Ohio General Assembly, the state legislature of the U.S. state of Ohio; the other house of the bicameral legislature being the Ohio Senate....
. He was defeated by future Congressman Bob Ney
Robert William Ney is an American politician from the U.S. state of Ohio. A Republican, Ney represented Ohio's 18th congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1995 until November 3, 2006, when he resigned...