Rep. Matt GaetzMatthew (Matt) GaetzThe Hill’s Morning Report – GOP pounces on Biden’s infrastructure plan Gaetz, on the ropes, finds few friends in GOP Matt Gaetz’s father backs his claims of extortion plot: report MORE (R-Fla.) showed photos of nude women who he claimed he had sex with to other lawmakers, multiple sources told CNN.
Two sources, who claim they were shown the material directly, said that the photos were “a point of pride” for Gaetz.
The sources also told the news outlet that Gaetz, 38, showed them the photos while conducting business on the House floor, adding that the Florida lawmaker displayed the images on his phone and talked about having sex with the women.
One source claimed that they were shown a video of a naked woman with a hula hoop.
The Hill has reached out to Gaetz’s office for comment.
The news from CNN comes after The New York Times first reported on Tuesday that he was being investigated by the Department of Justice (DOJ) over an alleged relationship with a 17-year-old girl.
Investigators are probing whether or not the lawmaker has violated federal sex trafficking laws by paying the girl to travel with him. The probe was opened during the last months of the Trump administration, under former Attorney General William BarrBill BarrPavlich: The Democrats next ‘public health’ power grab is coming The Hill’s Morning Report – Biden seeks expanded government, tax hikes Matt Gaetz under investigation for alleged sexual relations with 17-year-old: report MORE.
The DOJ’s investigation into Gaetz, a vocal Trump ally, is part of a larger investigation involving former Florida county tax collector Joel Greenberg, who faces charges of sex trafficking a child and providing payment to people, including a female minor in exchange for sex.
Gaetz has denied the allegations, and claims that the accusations are part of a plot to extort him for tens of millions of dollars.
“Over the past several weeks my family and I have been victims of an organized criminal extortion involving a former DOJ official seeking $25 million while threatening to smear my name,” Gaetz said in a series of tweets on Tuesday.
“We have been cooperating with federal authorities in this matter and my father has even been wearing a wire at the FBI’s direction to catch these criminals. The planted leak to The New York Times tonight was intended to thwart that investigation,” he wrote.
CNN notes that it is unclear whether or not the photos Gaetz reportedly showed to his colleagues are connected to the DOJ investigation.
Several Democrats have called for Gaetz’s suspension from the House Judiciary Committee while the DOJ investigation is ongoing.
Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiThe Hill’s Morning Report – GOP pounces on Biden’s infrastructure plan Biden sets off Capitol Hill scramble on spending, taxes Biden clashes with business groups over tax hike MORE (D-Calif.) on Thursday said that the House Ethics Committee should launch an investigation into the Florida lawmaker, emphasizing that if the allegations are true, that he should be subject to criminal penalties outside of Congress.
Before the DOJ investigation was made public Tuesday evening, Axios reported earlier that day Gaetz was considering retiring from Congress to take a job with Newsmax. The lawmaker told allies that he is thinking of ending his congressional career in its third term.
UPDATED 8:10 p.m.