Gaetzgate

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Time to free the Florida Man thread.

CNN’s Dana Bash revealed that she received several texts from some of Rep. Matt Gaetz’s current and former Republican colleagues in Congress. Many include language that she can’t repeat on morning television.

Gaetz is the Republican member of Congress—and close ally of former President Donald Trump—who finds himself at the center of an investigation that reportedly includes allegations of sex trafficking, among other sordid details like paying for sex and drug use are, as yet, unverified.
Bash has been covering the Capitol for years and is as well networked as virtually any reporter in Washington D.C. Co-anchor John Avlon asked her about the current atmosphere in Congress regarding the Gaetz scandal. “This guy was so tight with President Trump,” he noted. “But it doesn’t exactly seem like his Republican colleagues are rallying to his defense.”

“Not in the least,” she replied. “If you could see my text messages from some of his current and former colleagues, I actually can’t repeat what some of them say on morning television.”
 

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A very useful timeline.

Tracking Matt Gaetz: The Florida Man’s Life Since He Started Getting Heat From The Feds
Rep. Matt Gaetz’s (R-FL) political career has been imploding for longer than we knew.

[...]

A TPM review of Gaetz’s behavior since June 2020 reveals significant changes in his tumultuous personal life. But what didn’t change was former President Trump’s happiness to keep him around for political purposes, even as a top Justice Department official tried to shy away from the Florida Republican.
 

Innula Zenovka

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It's as if he has to make everything worse.

I mean, it would have been perfectly reasonable to say that while he shared everyone's concern that the plea deal with Epstein looked absurdly generous and highly questionable, nevertheless, pacta sunt servanda (deals must be kept) is a fundamental principle of law and a court would probably need quite some persuading there was any lawful reason to set it aside.

That's all he needed to say, or should have said.

The trouble with that, of course, is that the judge would probably surmise that the prosecutor would have needed a good reason to give Epstein a deal like that, and take the view the court would like to know the reason, and whether Epstein kept his side of whatever the bargain was. Though that would be another reason to stay well away from it.
 
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A little crazy.

Former Gaetz Aide Holds Bizarre Presser To Disavow Any Knowledge Of Alleged Wrongdoing
Retired Air Force Capt. Nathan Nelson, previously Gaetz’s director of military affairs for four years, held a very brief press conference Monday in front of what appeared to be his home.

He told reporters that last Wednesday afternoon, two members of the FBI had come to his house “unannounced” saying that members of the media had contacted them asserting that he, Nelson, had knowledge about Gaetz engaging in illegal activities, which prompted his departure from his Gaetz’s office.

Nelson denied the claims, saying that neither he nor any other member of Gaetz’s staff had any knowledge of Gaetz’s alleged involvement in any illegal activity. He added that his departure from Gaetz’s office at the end of October was long-planned.
 

Innula Zenovka

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sure he didn't..... uh huh
I dunno. I'm not au fait with the way the FBI conduct operations, so I don't know why they wouldn't phone him rather than send two agents round to his house, but however suspicious it may be, you certainly can't jump to any conclusions other than that everyone involved with Gaetz seems to have an insane compulsion to make any bad situation even worse through clownishly stupid behaviour.

So, yes, understandable, really.
 

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Innula Zenovka

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He wants to pin the crazy Nigerian prince style scam thing on Garland? I hadn't heard about any mass firings at the DOJ, so it's not "Garland ''s DOJ", there are Goofus appointees still, and Garland isn't a mob boss type like Low Barr. Wouldn't expect Gaetz to realize that, though.
As I understood it, the pitch is not "transfer lots of money in fees and you'll get a cut of my late uncle the corrupt Nigerian oil minister's ill-gotten gains" but "transfer lots of money to fund this supposed prisoner exchange and my uncle the joke and dagger guy will get the FBI off your son's back."
 

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Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) built a public profile as an unapologetic, unambiguous, omnipresent booster of President Donald Trump.

But as his own political career skids toward disaster amid allegations that he had sex with a minor and paid for sex with women of legal age, neither Trump nor anyone in the ex-president’s orbit is rushing to Gaetz’s defense. A group that often instinctively decries any such charge as part of some nefarious, coordinated witch hunt from deep-state operators has, instead, said virtually nothing at all.

“Not a lot of people are surprised,” said one person involved in Trump’s post-presidential operations.
Also,
Some of Gaetz’s own aides would regularly send embarrassing videos of their boss to other GOP operatives, according to two people familiar with the videos.

“Anyone that has ever spent 10 minutes with the guy would realize he’s an unserious person,” said one former Trump campaign aide.
Very. Unserious. Person.
 
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