This quote from Matt Gaetz’s book looks so much worse after his sex scandal blew up

This quote from Matt Gaetz’s book looks so much worse after his sex scandal blew up
Rep. Matt Gaetz (RNC)

With the U.S. Department of Justice investigating allegations that Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida was sexually involved with a 17-year-old girl — an allegation he has vehemently denied — the far-right GOP congressman's history is being closely scrutinized. With this new lens, many observers — including The Bulwark's Charlie Sykes — have highlighted old quotes from Gaetz's book, "Firebrand: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the MAGA Revolution," published in September 2020.

Reporting on the book in Vanity Fair on September 14, 2020, journalist Abigail Tracy drew attention to some of the things Gaetz had to say about then-President Donald Trump's personal life as well as his own. Gaetz, one of Trump's most bombastic supporters, wrote, "I have an active social life, and it's probably easier in the era of Trump. We've had 'perfect family man' presidents before, after all, and many of those men sold out our country, even if their wives were happy the whole time. If politicians' family lives aren't what really matter to the voters, maybe that's a good thing. I'm a representative, not a monk."

This last line now seems more like a confession than a boast, as multiple reports indicate he has been sexually inappropriate at work and mya have paid women for sex.

Trump, during his presidency, was incredibly popular among far-right White evangelicals like Pat Robertson, Tony Perkins, James Dobson and Jerry Falwell, Jr. — which is ironic in light of the fact that, as Tracy noted in Vanity Fair, Trump was a "thrice-married serial adulterer." And Gaetz, in his book, used the words "fun-loving politician" to describe Trump and indicated that he was cut from the same cloth.

"We've got a president now who doesn't care for puritanical grandstanding or moralistic preening," Gaetz wrote. "He is a lot more direct — even visceral, open, and realistic — about his likes and dislikes. So overall, this is a good time to be a fun-loving politician instead of a stick-in-the-mud."

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card


Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.