Here’s a story you don’t see every day: a Republican lawmaker in Michigan faked a gay sex scandal–in order to hide his illicit relationship with a fellow female politician.
Todd Courser, a member of the Michigan House of Representatives, had been having an affair with Michigan State Representative Cindy Gamrat, who is also a Republican. Both were married with children at the time of the affair.
Fearful that fellow Republicans were about to blow the whistle on their extramarital relationship, he decided to go nuclear–by creating a completely different scandal, in order to distract and mislead.
Courser ordered his (now-former) aide, Ben Graham, to blast an email to the possible whistleblowers, “exposing” Courser being caught having sex with a male prostitute at a Lansing, Michigan, nightclub.
Courser gave specific instructions for the email–including making sure he was described as an “alcoholic, drug-addicted bisexual monster.” Graham secretly recorded those planning conversations.
When Graham eventually refused to send the email, Courser fired him–and accused him of being a pawn in the possible exposure of Courser and Gamrat’s actual affair.
Predictably, Republicans in Michigan are angry at both politicians for the damage its done to the reputation of the party and to Michigan’s state government in general.
“If this weren’t so offensive, it might be funny,” said Michigan Speaker of the House Kevin Cotter, also a Republican.
“These two representatives voluntarily engaged in the affair and they need to own up to that. There are 107 other members of the House currently serving. It’s so unfair to this institution as a whole and it’s so unfair that we have this type of distraction.”