Report: Gaetz Fought ‘Revenge Porn’ Bill Because He Said It Infringed His Freedom

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Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) was the primary opponent of Florida’s “revenge porn” law when he served as a state lawmaker before his election to Congress, reportedly opposing the bill because it infringed on his rights.

Talking Points Memo reports:

Former Florida state Rep. Tom Goodson (R) described on Monday how the embattled Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) was the primary opponent of his bill outlawing “revenge porn,” aka pornographic images of the victim distributed by a former sex partner without consent, when the now-U.S. congressman served in his home state’s House of Representatives.

“Matt was absolutely against it,” Goodson told the Orlando Sentinel. “He thought the picture was his to do with what he wanted. He thought that any picture was his to use as he wanted to, as an expression of his rights.”

Gaetz was one of the two votes against the legislation once it reached a final vote in the state House in 2015.

TPM noted that Goodson’s comments follow reporting from CNN and The Washington Post “that Gaetz had a pattern of boasting about his sexual exploits to his colleagues and showing them nude photos and videos of the women he claimed to have sex with” — even reportedly showing them to lawmakers on the floor of the U.S. House.

Additionally, Gaetz is under federal investigation for allegedly sleeping with a 17-year-old and paying for her to travel across state lines. The investigation stems from the Justice Department’s criminal case against former Seminole county tax collector Joel Greenberg, a friend of Gaetz who has been charged with sex trafficking (along with a host of other crimes). The Post reported that Gaetz bragged about the women he met through Greenberg to associates in Florida politics.

Gaetz has denied any wrongdoing and claimed he is the victim of an extortion attempt, TPM noted. His office did not respond to the outlet’s request for comment on the revenge porn bill,

Read more.

Image credit: Gage Skidmore / CC BY-SA 2.0 / Flickr

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