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In Case You Missed It, Matt Gaetz Won His Primary This Week


Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fl) speaks during the "Save America Summit" at the Trump National Doral golf resort

This week saw another round of primary elections in states across the U.S. and there’s some bad news out of Florida. Matt Gaetz, still currently the subject of a federal investigation regarding alleged sex trafficking of a minor (plus a host of other potential crimes), won his primary election. Given the demographic makeup of his deep-red district, that means he’s almost certainly headed back for another term in Congress, unless he happens to be otherwise indisposed by November. Like, for example, by being incarcerated. (We can dream!)

You might be wondering how someone could win an election—and by a hefty margin at that—despite not only the weight of that federal investigation but also after spending months making disgusting, misogynistic comments at public events, as well as doing basically nothing to help his constituents. I don’t have a great answer for that but it probably didn’t help that the only real challenger he faced seems to be a complete and utter bozo on every level.

According to Mark Lombardo’s official campaign website, there are some things he cares about, like “election integrity” and preventing gun control. But I don’t know how voters were supposed to know any of that, seeing as he seems to have based his entire campaign on pushing Gaetz conspiracy theories.

You might have seen this ad, titled “The Informant?” (just asking questions!), which suggests Matt Gaetz is a federal informant who aided the FBI search of Trump’s home. “Gaetz hired Jeffrey Epstein’s attorney. Another Epstein attorney approved the raid on Trump’s house,” a female narrator says in the 30-second ad, going on to suggest that Gaetz wanted revenge on Trump for refusing to give him a presidential pardon.

Lombardo—a former FedEx executive who’s campaign was reportedly self-funded—also released “The Informant – Part II,” which implies that Donald Trump Jr. recently travelled to Florida to “get the answers” a the behest of his father.

So I guess it’s not surprising that voters re-elected Gaetz with 68.9% of the vote if this was their only other realistic option. He’ll go on to face the Democratic nominee Rebekah Jones in November unless he’s be busy with—fingers crossed—other things.

(image: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

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Vivian Kane (she/her) is the Senior News Editor at The Mary Sue, where she's been writing about politics and entertainment (and all the ways in which the two overlap) since the dark days of late 2016. Born in San Francisco and radicalized in Los Angeles, she now lives in Kansas City, Missouri, where she gets to put her MFA to use covering the local theatre scene. She is the co-owner of The Pitch, Kansas City’s alt news and culture magazine, alongside her husband, Brock Wilbur, with whom she also shares many cats.