House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said Wednesday that Gaetz would be removed from his committees if the charges were proven, but sidestepped the issue of what to do while the case is ongoing. "Those are serious implications", McCarthy said. "It if comes out to be true, yes, we would remove him if that was the case". That ex-official has sought $25 million, Gaetz says.
Federal investigators were examining whether the 38-year-old violated federal sex trafficking laws, the newspaper reported.
Nonetheless, Gaetz says both of these are proof that "we are in an era of our politics, where people are smeared to try to take them out of the conversation".
Some Democrats have called for his committee positions to be revoked. McGee denied those claims to The Post, saying he had no connection to the agency's probe into possible sex trafficking by Gaetz. Gaetz then insisted Carlson had previously met "a friend" of his who he claimed was "threatened by the Federal Bureau of Investigation". He said none of the women he's dated were underage, so I still don't understand what he's saying here.
Gaetz denied that the allegations against him were true but also, in an interview with Axios, he said he believed "that there are people at the Department of Justice who are trying to criminalize my sexual conduct, you know when I was a single guy".
A subject is conventionally thought of as someone whose actions fall within the scope of a criminal investigation, whereas a target is someone whom prosecutors have gathered evidence linking to a crime.
The Times also reports that "the investigation was opened in the final months of the Trump administration under Attorney General William Barr" with senior Justice Department officials aware of the inquiry. The lawyer has been in private practice for more than two decades.
"I know that there was a demand for money in exchange for a commitment that he [the former DOJ official] could make this investigation go away", Gaetz told Fox News' Tucker Carlson during an interview Tuesday night. The firm said McGee had served in top positions at the USA attorney's office in Florida about 25 years ago and his "reputation for integrity and ethical conduct was impeccable".
Gaetz said his family has been cooperating with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and said his father was wearing a recording device, at the FBI's direction, "to catch these criminals". The sources said the Gaetz investigation was connected to the investigation of Gaetz associate Joel Greenberg, a former tax collector in Florida who was indicted a year ago on charges including sex trafficking of a child.
"I'm not the only person on screen right now who's been falsely accused of a awful sex act", the lawmaker told Tucker Carlson.
"The allegations against me are as searing as they are false", Gaetz, who represents Florida's 1st Congressional District, told Axios.
He continued: "Providing for flights and hotel rooms for people that you're dating who are of legal age is not a crime". I've been, you know, generous as a partner.
"I don't think it's a coincidence that tonight, somehow the New York Times is leaking this information, smearing me and ruining the investigation that would likely result in one of the former colleagues of the current DOJ being brought to justice for trying to extort me and my family", Gaetz said. Gaetz has not been charged "and the extent of his criminal exposure is unclear", according to the Times.
A spokesperson for Gaetz did not immediately respond to a request for comment.