SALT LAKE CITY — Utah's lone Democratic member of Congress said Thursday embattled New York Rep. Anthony Weiner needs to resign because of his "reprehensible" behavior.

"I think it's time for him to go," Rep. Jim Matheson, D-Utah, said. "This behavior is unconscionable. It demeans the U.S. Congress."

Weiner has acknowledged sending sexually explicit Internet messages and not initially telling the truth about them. House Democratic leaders are said to be pushing for his resignation.

"This is very bad for the institution in general," Matheson said "Any time a member of Congress is involved in a high-profile scandal, I think it just increases more cynicism."

Matheson said there's no need to tighten up Congressional rules as a result of Weiner's activities. "The public reaction speaks for itself," he said, noting members of Congress "just need to understand appropriate behavior" and set an example.

"We tell kids all the time, 'Don't put this inappropriate material on the Internet, be careful what you put out there,'" Matheson said. "For an elected official who's in the public eye to do that, that's just sending all the wrong messages."

Lisa Riley Roche

Twitter: dnewspolitics