Katie Hill Refuses to Go Quietly Into That Good Night
The now-former member of Congress, Katie Hill of California, has formally stepped down. However, first, she made her farewell speech on the floor of the House. According to Politico, the address was quite something to witness.
’I’m stepping down, but I refuse to let this experience scare off other women who dare to take risks, who dare to step into this light, who dare to be powerful,’ Hill, who has denied the allegations, said in the nearly eight-minute speech.
‘The way to overcome this setback is for women to keep showing up, to keep running for office, to keep stepping up as leaders, because the more we show up, the less power they have.’
Hill recently became famous because of revelations that she had engaged in three-way relationships with both men and women before and during her tenure as a member of Congress. One involved a female campaign staffer. Another, which she denied and is the cause of the ending of her political career, allegedly involved a male staffer in her Congressional office. Complicating matters is the fact that her husband, who participated in at least one of these so-called “thruples” is now divorcing her.
Just to add spice to the scandal, the first known to have involved a female politician in the United States, certain have surfaced. One involves Hill, while naked, brushing the hair of the before mentioned female staffer. Another depicts Hill, naked, holding a bong pipe and sporting a tattoo that some have described as a Nazi motif on her pubic region.
Hill, as she returns to private life, vowing to campaign so that other women do not suffer the same fate she had, does have some defenders.
According to the Washington Examiner, Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez declared that what happened to her now-former member of the House could not possibly have happened to a male congressman. “This doesn’t happen to male members in the same way — revenge porn in this respect.”
Both Hill and AOC seem to have forgotten the fate suffered by Anthony Weiner, a former member of Congress and a candidate for mayor of New York, who has tripped up for sending lewd pictures of himself via text messages to underage girls. Al Franken might still be a United States senator had he not have pictures of him taken leering and grabbing at a sleeping, female reporter.
Before social media allowed people to make bigger fools of themselves than they already were because of misbehavior, political sex scandals have gone back to the very founding of the Republic and have involved such great men as Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, and Andrew Jackson.
Past sex scandals have involved the great and the obscure, members of the House, United States senators, justices of the Supreme Court, and even presidents of the United States. The results of such scandals have ranged from political embarrassment, the end of careers, and in at least one case of a woman who shot dead her United States senator lover for having a second mistress. She was acquitted for reasons of temporary insanity.
A cursory look at history will reveal how Gary Hart’s second run for the presidency was derailed because of a sex scandal. And no one can forget how the last years of Bill Clinton’s presidency were blighted, partly because of his dalliance with a White House intern named Monica Lewinsky, leading to the second impeachment in American history.
On the other hand, Donald Trump managed to be elected president anyway despite some salacious revelations that came out of his own mouth thanks to the Access Hollywood tape.
The one common thread of nearly 250 years of American politicians getting themselves into trouble is that they were all men. Katie Hill enjoys the unique distinction of being the first American female politician who blew up her political career because of a sex scandal. The fact speaks much for the advancement of women in politics and the use of social media to document misbehavior.
Katie Hill has one defender that has raised some eyebrows. Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Florida appeared on Martha MacCallum’s Fox News program, “This is an issue where a lot of millennials, I think sympathize with Katie Hill because a lot of young people who grew up with a smartphone in their hands took pictures, sent them, shared messages and materials that are now recoverable later in life.”
Gaetz blamed the Democrats for Hill’s woes. His statement suggests that public people especially should turn off the smartphone when engaging in salacious behavior.