The U.S. Department of Justice has been investigating Matt Gaetz for multiple crimes related to alleged sex trafficking of a minor. Although Gaetz has denied the charges, a growing number of his own constituents aren’t buying it, and Gaetz’s recent misogynistic statements are only harming his reputation even further. In the home stretch of his campaign to be the GOP nominee for Florida’s 1st Congressional District, Gaetz is quickly learning that he’s not the Teflon candidate he thought he was.
On Tuesday evening, Gaetz appeared as the host for “Academy Night” at Niceville High School in Okaloosa County, in the middle of his district. The purpose of the event was to offer students information and guidance about attending U.S. service academies, for which a Congressional nomination is required.
This type of event is itself neither unusual nor controversial. However, the fact Gaetz was interacting with children while under investigation for sex trafficking got many locals outraged. Members of “Women Against Matt Gaetz,” a roughly 11,000-member Facebook group that formed only a few weeks ago, held a press conference ahead of the event, demanding “intervention” from Congress. Founder Samantha Herring told reporters it’s “inappropriate for a sitting United States Congressman to engage with young people, especially young women.”
Cara Marion, an Okaloosa School Board candidate, also pointed out Gaetz’s recent comments at the Turning Point USA Student Action Summit in Tampa mocking “pro-abortion, pro-murder” advocates. “Why is it that the women with the least likelihood of getting pregnant are the ones most worried about having abortions?” Gaetz wondered aloud before calling them “odious from the inside out.” Gaetzplaining that “[n]obody wants to impregnate you if you look like a thumb,” the proud misogynist suggested that these women, whom he imagined are “like 5’2”, 350 pounds,” all need to “march for like an hour a day, swing those arms, get the blood pumping, maybe mix in a salad.”
Mark Lombardo, who is seeking the GOP nomination in the hope of replacing Gaetz, told local ABC affiliate WEAR-TV, “Somebody who is being investigated for sex trafficking and is using Jeffrey Epstein’s attorney has no business having authority over elite 17- and 18-year-olds who are trying to get into the service academies.” Indeed, with the Republican primary approaching this coming Tuesday, August 23, this latest public condemnation of Gaetz is the last thing he needs. It may, however, prove to be just what the country needs to put the proverbial final nail in Gaetz’s political coffin. Stay tuned.