‘STOP!’ Fmr Dem Rep. Katie Hill defends friend Matt Gaetz and his adopted son Nestor after left’s ugliness

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Former California Democratic Rep. Katie Hill, who was forced to resign last year following a sex scandal, stepped back into the limelight Thursday to defend former Republican colleague Matt Gaetz of Florida, who has come under attack from the Left after he introduced his 19-year-old adopted son, Nestor, this week.

“For all those wondering, this is my son Nestor. We share no blood but he is my life. He came from Cuba (legally, of course) six years ago and lives with me in Florida. I am so proud of him and raising him has been the best, most rewarding thing I’ve done in my life,” Gaetz wrote Thursday in a tweet that included a photo of himself and his Cuban-born son.

The Florida lawmaker followed that tweet with another, in which he wrote that he was offended by a colleague’s suggestion during recent debates in the House that Republicans can’t relate to cultural and ethnicity issues.

“Nestor turned 19 a few days ago & will be off to University. He arrived here at 12. As you can imagine, I was triggered when (to make an absurd debate point) a fellow congressman diminished the contributions of Republicans because we don’t raise non-white kids. Well, I have,” Gaetz noted.

Gaetz’s sister, Erin, also weighed in.

“Matt has been an incredible father to Nestor, who just graduated from high school and will be attending college in the fall. So proud of them both,” she wrote.

The lawmaker’s admission comes after a fiery debate with Democratic Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-La.) earlier in the week as the House debated police reforms following the deaths of George Floyd in Minneapolis and Rayshard Brooks in Atlanta at the hands of officers, under entirely different circumstances.

During a hearing, Richmond said “as a black male who went to the fifth-best public high school in the country, who was a victim of excessive force, who has a black son, who has worries that you all don’t, and to my colleagues, especially the ones that keep introducing amendments that are a tangent and a distraction from what we’re talking about, you all are white males.

“You’ve never lived in my shoes, and you do not know what it’s like to be an African American male,” he added, “and all I’m saying, is if you are opposed to this legislation, let’s just have the vote, but please do not come in this committee room and make a mockery of the pain that exists in my community.”

Gaetz objected to Richmond’s suggestion that Republicans could not relate.

“I appreciate your passion,” Gaetz told the Democratic lawmaker. “Are you suggesting that you’re certain that none of us have non-white children? Because you reflect on your black son, and you said none of us could understand.”

“Matt, Matt. Stop,” Richmond said, cutting off Gaetz. “I’m not about to get sidetracked about the color of our children … It is not about the color of your kids. It is about black males, black people in the streets that are getting killed, and if one of them happens to be your kid, I’m concerned about him, too, and clearly, I’m more concerned about him than you are.”

“You’re claiming you have more concern for my family than I do?” an angry Gaetz fired back. “Who in the hell do you think you are?”

“If the shoe fits,” Richmond replied.

But Hill, whom many would view as an unlikely defender of a GOP lawmaker, came to Gaetz’s aid.

**Warning: Language

“Many of you know @mattgaetz & I have an unlikely friendship. I can’t stand a lot of his beliefs but he’s been there for me when others haven’t. He talks about Nestor more than anything, has done so much for his son & is truly a proud dad. This #freenestor thing is bulls***. Stop,” Hill wrote Thursday on Twitter.

She went on to explain that Gaetz was merely shielding a previously underage son from unwanted scrutiny and attention in an increasingly hostile political and cultural environment.

“Also he was never ‘hiding’ his son. He was trying to protect him from the crap that comes from being a politician’s kid, esp after what Nestor had been through, esp in this political climate. Now that Nestor is grown he’s made his own choice to enter the spotlight. Good for them,” she added.

For her act of comity, however, Hill was attacked by some people claiming they were previously supporters of hers.

“Do you really believe that or are you taking the high road? I don’t believe Matt has ever done a good, unselfish thing in his entire life,” one Twitter user wrote.

“Sorry Katie not buying it. Of course he wouldn’t stop talking about him if he was trying to sell the whole ‘he’s my son’ story to all his colleagues,” wrote another.

In October, reports surfaced that Hill had engaged in a “throuple” relationship against House rules with congressional staffers.

RedState reported that Hill, at the time in the process of getting a divorce, had a two-year consensual relationship involving her husband, Kenny Heslep, and a younger female staff member. She went on to have an affair with her former finance director-turned legislative director Graham Kelly, the report noted.

Days later, the House Ethics Committee launched an investigation after those reports surfaced. By late October, Hill resigned.

Jon Dougherty

Staff Writer
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Jon is a staff writer for BizPac Review with 30 years' worth of reporting experience, as well as an author and U.S. Army veteran. He has a BA in political science from Ashford University and an MA in national security studies/intelligence analysis from American Military University.
Jon Dougherty

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