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Matt Gaetz Defended Me, but Allegations Are 'Reprehensible'

Katie Hill, who resigned amid sex scandal, says Gaetz must do same if accusations even partly true
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 6, 2021 6:16 AM CDT

(Newser) – New congresswoman Katie Hill resigned from Congress in 2019 during a messy scandal—nude photos of her leaked online, along with the news that she'd had a sexual relationship with a staffer. One of the few lawmakers from either party to publicly defend her was another young lawmaker, Rep. Matt Gaetz. In a piece at Vanity Fair, Hill describes how their unlikely friendship developed in Congress even though they were polar opposites politically. Hill explains that she has become the go-to person for reporters whenever a new sex scandal breaks, and, yes, she anticipates the typical reaction from critics: "Shouldn’t you be naked smoking a bong or nailing some staff?" In this case, the situation is especially odd—the scandal involves one of the few people who defended her during her own scandal. But she's not allowing her friendship to cloud the bigger picture.

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"Let me state it as clearly as possible: If, despite his denials, Matt Gaetz did have sex with a minor, if he did provide girls and young women with drugs and money and gifts in exchange for sex, if he did ask these girls and young women to recruit other women for the same purpose, and if he did show his colleagues images of nude women without their consent, he needs to be held responsible," she writes. "Some of these actions are criminal and some of them should be. All are morally reprehensible and unacceptable for a lawmaker." Hill writes that she was victimized in the same way that Gaetz allegedly victimized women, by displaying nude photos of them without permission. She continues to fight for tougher laws on the issue. "If there is even a fraction of truth to these reports, he should resign immediately." Click to read the full op-ed. (Read more Matt Gaetz stories.)

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