If Matt Gaetz was hoping his “America First” tour with Marjorie Taylor Greene that kicked off at a retirement community in Florida last Friday would distract people from his ongoing teen sex/prostitution scandal, he can think again.
Multiple media outlets are reporting that federal investigators are now pushing for cooperation from two key witnesses in their ongoing probe into the antigay congressman, including his ex-girlfriend. And it sure sounds like she’s feeling the heat.
The unnamed ex is a former Capitol Hill intern who purportedly joined Gaetz, along with several other women, on a wild trip to the Bahamas back in 2018.
Investigators are trying to learn whether any of the women on the trip were paid to travel and have sex with Gaetz and others, as well as whether the trip was part of an attempt to illegally influence him into advocating for medical marijuana legislation in Congress.
The cooperation of [Joel] Greenberg and the former girlfriend could be among the final steps in the probe of Gaetz. Investigators view both as crucial to understanding the relevance of hundreds of transactions they have obtained records of, including those involving payments for sex, sources familiar with the investigation tell CNN. The ex-girlfriend could also be questioned by investigators about a second woman as they try to determine whether Gaetz may have slept with that woman when she was only 17.
The former girlfriend, who did not work in Gaetz’s office on Capitol Hill, is of interest to investigators because she was on a trip Gaetz took to the Bahamas in 2018 and is believed to have knowledge of drug use and arrangements with women, the sources say.
Last month, Politico reported that federal agents had seized the ex’s phone and that she was freaking out after she realized she might have been tricked by the 17-year-old, who secretly taped one of their phone conversations.
Two of her friends, who declined to be identified publicly because of the sensational nature of the case, say she now suspects she was being set up when the alleged victim and another woman involved in the case called her to discuss the lawmaker in what she fears might have been a recorded conference call.
…The friends did not provide details about exactly what was discussed, but one recounted that Gaetz’s ex-girlfriend said she was opposed to talking to authorities and is now worried that prosecutors might try to charge her with obstructing justice in order to get to Gaetz.
Gaetz has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing. Meanwhile, his ex’s lawyer says she’s not commenting on the matter. And the FBI and Justice Department also aren’t saying anything, although it is believed they are almost finished collecting evidence. CNN notes, however, that it will likely take “some time” for the investigators to decide whether there’s enough evidence to indict Gaetz.
Graham Gremore is the Features Editor and a Staff Writer at Queerty. Follow him on Twitter @grahamgremore.