Comedian and performer Daniel Pants has been skewering embattled congressman Matt Gaetz in a series of humorous videos on TikTok. Gaetz who has served as the U.S. representative for Florida’s 1st congressional district since 2017 is a Republican and was one of President Donald J. Trump’s most stalwart allies when he was in office.
Gaetz has been under investigation by the Justice Department since the latter days of the Trump administration over whether he had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old and paid for her to travel with him, according to three people briefed on the matter.
According to the New York Times, “Investigators are examining whether Mr. Gaetz violated federal sex trafficking laws, the people said. A variety of federal statutes make it illegal to induce someone under 18 to travel over state lines to engage in sex in exchange for money or something of value. The Justice Department regularly prosecutes such cases, and offenders often receive severe sentences.”
It was not clear how Mr. Gaetz met the girl, believed to be 17 at the time of encounters about two years ago that investigators are scrutinizing, according to two of the people. The examination of Mr. Gaetz, 38, is part of a broader investigation into a political ally of his, a local official in Florida named Joel Greenberg, who was indicted last summer on an array of charges, including sex trafficking of a child and financially supporting people in exchange for sex, at least one of whom was an underage girl.
In 2017, Mr. Gaetz was the only member of Congress to vote against a law that gave the federal government more power and money to fight human trafficking. “Voters in Northwest Florida did not send me to Washington to go and create more federal government,” Mr. Gaetz said in a local television interview at the time. “If anything, we should be abolishing a lot of the agencies at the federal level.”
Mr. Gaetz’s personal life has gained attention before. Last summer, he announced that he had a son, Nestor Galban, 19, though Mr. Gaetz said he was not Mr. Galban’s biological father, nor had he adopted him. Mr. Galban had been 12 when they met and had come to the United States from Cuba; Mr. Gaetz was at the time dating Mr. Galban’s sister.
Ripe fodder for criticism and parody, Mr. Pants obliges.
Matt Gaetz asks me if I want to go skiing with him.
@danielpantssJust some more Matt Gaetz slander for y’all. ##fyp ##foryou ##viral ##MattGaetz ##marjorietaylorgreene ##funny ##foryoupage ##lgbtq ##trafficingawarness♬ original sound – Daniel Pants
If you wanna hang you’re gonna have to have sex with one of these girls.
@danielpantssReply to @n8_the_sk8 ##fyp ##foryou ##mattgaetz ##republican ##lgbt ##lifeisgooddance ##DenimYourWay ##funny ##viralvideo♬ original sound – Daniel Pants