Critics of Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), particularly his Democratic colleagues, are increasing their calls for him to resign amid a complex sex scandal.
Even former Rep. Katie Hill (D-CA), whom Gaetz defended during her own scandal involving the leak of a nude photo and salacious rumors, is now applying pressure on him to step down.
“Even a fraction of truth”
The Florida Republican is accused of footing the bill for a 17-year-old girl to travel with him as well as showing photos of nude women to his fellow lawmakers on Capitol Hill.
As Hill wrote in a piece for Vanity Fair this week, she believes he should “resign immediately” if “there is even a fraction of truth” to the allegations against him.
The two lawmakers appeared to have struck up a bipartisan friendship amid Hill’s controversy when Gaetz tweeted: “Who among us would look perfect if every ex leaked every photo/text? Katie isn’t being investigated by Ethics or maligned because she hurt anyone — it is because she is different.”
Gaetz subsequently attracted criticism for adopting a Cuban teen, prompting Hill to return the kind gesture.
“He talks about Nestor more than anything, has done so much for his son & is truly a proud dad,” she tweeted at the time.
“Not anything else”
Initially, Hill approached the latest Gaetz scandal with the hope “that the investigation would ultimately clear him.”
In the wake of accusations that he passed around nude photos of at least two women, however, Hill seems to have switched from a defender to an attacker, noting the similarities between her own experience and the allegations against Gaetz.
She went on to assert that a 17-year-old “is a girl, not a woman,” and that statutory rape “is rape, not anything else.”
For his part, Gaetz continues to deny that any of the allegations are true. In fact, he claims that his family was the victim of an extortion attempt to the tune of $25 million — and the man he accused of being involved in it has since admitted he asked for the money.
Bob Kent said the request was not extortion, however, but an effort to raise funds to rescue a missing FBI agent. Gaetz claims to have evidence that supports his claims and is calling on federal investigators to release the information.