Once again, the people who have known Matt Gaetz for years are speaking out about his behavior from long before he joined Congress, and the patterns aren’t surprising anyone. In fact, the only classmate who expressed surprise at the allegations against Gaetz currently was only surprised that he would risk his position — not at the behavior itself.
Business Insider interviewed several of Gaetz’ law school classmates in light of a letter, signed by more than 500 alumni of William & Mary Law School, including dozens of Gaetz’ own classmates.
The letter calls for Gaetz to resign his position in Congress, as he’s embarrassing his fellow alumni with “efforts to stoke white supremacy, incite violence, and dispute the legitimacy of the 2020 election — thereby questioning fundamental democratic processes.”
His classmates have a list of stories to tell, including a screenshot of an email where Gaetz planned a party and begged everyone to bring girls because “After entering all of your email addresses it is painfully obvious that I don’t know enough girls.”
They talk about his boasting — his family owns a house that was used in filming the movie The Truman Show in 1998, and apparently he couldn’t stop talking about it, even in class discussions.
One classmate who didn’t ask to remain anonymous, Carolyn Fiddler, says that if Gaetz hadn’t gone on to be a far-right legislator, he would have been an entirely forgettable ” just another dude that I didn’t want to hang out with.” Instead, she says she sees herself as the co-founder of the “Matt Haetz Society”.
That people who spent years attending classes with Gaetz hold low opinions of him isn’t entirely new information — earlier this year, it was reported that there are Facebook groups where his former classmates discuss his bad behavior and how it carries over into Congress — including matching a story of him sharing nude photos of a sexual conquest with others at a wedding reception, to the allegations that he’s done the same on the House floor.
Matt Gaetz categorically denies he ever traveled with the minor he is accused of raping. pic.twitter.com/0e9F2tsI7g
— The Daily Edge (@TheDailyEdge) March 31, 2021
Gaetz denies the allegations, pointing to his travel records as evidence, although the allegation is not, as he claims, that he “traveled with” an underage girl, but that he paid for the travel and accommodations for a 17-year-old girl in exchange for sex. Gaetz maintains that it’s an extortion attempt, although his colleague has pled guilty.
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Steph Bazzle reports on social issues and religion for Hill Reporter. She focuses on stories that speak to everyone's right to practice what they believe in and receive the support of their communities and government officials. You can reach her at Steph@HillReporter.com