Rep. Matt Gaetz cites extortion as the motivation behind a recent DOJ investigation into his alleged relationship with a 17-year-old girl. The Florida Rep. says the allegations against him are "verifiably false."
He claims it is an attempt to smear his name and is a direct assault due to the fact that he is a known critic of President Biden and Democrat policy and was a supporter of Donald Trump during his presidency.
He also says that the New York Times broke the story and likely disrupted an ongoing FBI investigation.
Rep. Gaetz Tells His Side, Drops a Name
Gaetz confirmed on Tuesday that the federal government is, in fact, investigating him for sexual misconduct. He insists that the accusations are entirely false and have been from the start back on March 16. He claims that it's an outright extortion scheme against him and his family, as reported by The Blaze.
In an interview with Fox News' Tucker Carlson, Gaetz laid out his defense. Rep. Gaetz said that a former DOJ official, David McGee, contacted his father via text and demanded a meeting. During the alleged meeting, Gaetz said McGee then demanded $25 million to "make horrible sex trafficking allegations go away."
Soon after, the Gaetz family took this disturbing information to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. At which time, the FBI suggested that Gaetz's father wear a wire for the next meeting. He did, and according to Rep. Gaetz, the FBI and DOJ are now in possession of recordings that can validate his claims of extortion.
Rep. Gaetz Says It's a Plot Against His Reputation
He told Axios the charges against him are merely a smear attempt and have no basis in truth. He is also claiming that people at the Department of Justice are trying to 'criminalize' him in order to make him irrelevant. His claims would suggest that the co-conspirators are drumming up falsehoods with hopes of negatively affecting his political career and subsequently shut him up.
The representative informed Axios that he was sure none of the women he traveled with were minors and that if a proper investigation is carried out, the flight logs and travel records will prove him right. He expressed concern as to why the DOJ publicized information that has yet to be verified and is entirely false.
In his 13-minute interview with the outlet, the Republican congressman asked that the FBI and DOJ release the taped recordings between his father and McGee. According to Gaetz, these agencies are withholding critical information pertinent to the case.
The report accuses Gaetz of arranging for the 17-year-old to travel with him, citing three people who supposedly know about the incident. Investigators are checking if any violation of federal sex trafficking laws occurred.
Gaetz said that providing for women he dates is not illegal, adding that he has paid for plane tickets and hotel rooms for past girlfriends. He describes himself as incredibly generous and insists that someone is attempting to make it sound illegal.
Gaetz Takes to Social Media
On Twitter, he once again defended his position as the WSJ leaked the investigation. He wants the public to know what happened, and not just the WSJ version.
Gaetz claims that he and his family have been collaborating with federal authorities on the alleged extortion, and the purpose of the leak to the WSJ was to hinder that investigation and essentially protect McGee and others at the DOJ.
However, it seems as though the damage has already been done. Axios was informed that Gaetz might not run for reelection and get a job at the conservative news outlet, Newsmax.
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