GOP worries Trump-backed Ohio senate candidate will be linked to adult website profile

 March 19, 2024

Ohio GOP Senate Candidate Bernie Moreno has a good chance to get the nomination for his party in Tuesday's primary race, but that prospect is making some Republicans very nervous because of a recent info dump linking him to an adult website profile from 2008.

Moreno's work email address has been linked to a profile that was created looking for casual sex with men, but questions remain about why it was created and whether Moreno actually had anything to do with it.

The last time the profile was accessed was six hours after it was created, and one of Moreno's interns at the time said he created it using Moreno's email and handle--nardo19672--as a prank that he now admits was not funny.

Data breach

The only reason the information became public is because the website, Adult Friend Finder, had a massive data breach.

The AP review of the records turned up the connection, but how much relevance does it really have 16 years later?

“I am thoroughly embarrassed by an aborted prank I pulled on my friend, and former boss, Bernie Moreno, nearly two decades ago,” the intern, Dan Ricci said.

The AP seemed to question his statement because he donated to the campaign, but there is no proof that Ricci didn't create the profile as a prank.

The really question is, will voters be convinced that Moreno doesn't have some kind of secret gay lifestyle that belies his current views on LGBT issues?

A nuanced view?

Apparently, there is some evidence that Moreno was supportive of gay rights or at least against discrimination. He said his oldest son is gay, so that makes sense.

Currently, he has come out against "radical trans ideology," but that's not the same thing, so it's not necessarily inconsistent.

While discrimination against any group is wrong, many Americans are against the kind of transgender rights that give puberty blockers to minors without their parents' consent and think it's fine for schools to help kids lie to their parents about their gender identity.

Granted, a nuanced view of LGBT issues is easily misunderstood by voters, and maybe GOP officials in Ohio can see that it will be hard for voters to understand his viewpoints if they are nuanced.

If Moreno does grab the nomination, the GOP will have some time to figure everything out. The Senate could really use that seat to be flipped.

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