It’s been almost two years since Matt Gaetz became the subject of a federal investigation involving his ties to a sex trafficking ring. Since then the MAGA lawmaker has done his best to ignore it and carry on normally — at least publicly. Behind the scenes is another story.
According to The Washington Post, during an interview with the House select committee investigating Jan. 6, Johnny McEntee, a former White House aide, claimed Gaetz at one point before or after the Capitol riot revealed he was seeking a preemptive pardon from outgoing president Donald Trump. At the time, the federal investigation had still not been made public. The aide said that Gaetz told him “that they are launching an investigation into him or that there’s an investigation into him.”
McEntee said that Gaetz professed his innocence, claiming investigators were simply “trying to make his life hell.” If the president could give him a little pardon ahead of time, though, McEntee said, “that would be great.”
Gaetz didn’t specify to McEntee what the investigation would involve, but McEntee said he thought that was the context. Sure enough, that April the investigation was made public, with the revelation that it had been ongoing for months.
A spokesperson for Gaetz denied that he was one of the many who sought pardons from Trump during his final days in office.
In the nearly two years since the investigation began, Gaetz has not (yet) been charged with any crimes, though Joel Greenberg, a Gaetz associate, pleaded guilty in the spring to six criminal charges. He agreed to sing to investigators.
If McEntee’s name sounds familiar, that’s because he was the former college quarterback who became Trump’s “bag man” in the final stretch of his one term presidency. He became known as the guy who would do anything Trump wanted. One high-profile secretary described him as a “fucking idiot.”
(Via The Post)