I sense buzzards circling. https://t.co/8oHyahOc6f
— Harold Cook (@HCookAustin) November 23, 2017
— Texas Tribune (@TexasTribune) November 23, 2017
U.S. Rep. Joe Barton, who apologized Wednesday for a lewd photo of him that circulated on the Internet, told a woman to whom he had sent sexually explicit photos, videos and messages that he would report her to the Capitol Police if she exposed his behavior, according to a recording reviewed by The Washington Post. The woman spoke to The Post after the lewd photo was published Tuesday by an anonymous Twitter account. She shared a secretly recorded phone conversation she had with Barton in 2015 in which he warned her against using the explicit materials “in a way that would negatively affect my career.” The woman described encounters and contact spanning a five-year period that began online after she posted a message on Barton’s Facebook page in 2011, leading to the sexually explicit exchanges and ultimately a pair of physical sexual encounters in Washington and Texas.
Powerful men using their power to have sex with women is hardly breaking news. If it’s true that power is the ultimate aphrodisiac, what Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX) is accused of is neither new nor particularly original. Penis-Americans have been using political power as a means of bedding women since the Pilgrims washed ashore.
Anyone who’s ever been involved in a sexual relationship (illicit or otherwise) understands that sometimes things end badly. In Barton’s case, there’s apparently a nude picture of him (try getting the thought of THAT out of your mind) which has been published on Twitter…and then there’s the 53-second video of him masturbating (Oh, the humanity! What about the children??) And does ANY American really need to hear these three words: “Joe Barton naked?”
In the 2015 phone call, Barton confronted the woman over her communications with the other women, including her decision to share explicit materials he had sent. In that context, he mentioned the Capitol Police, a comment the woman interpreted as an attempt to intimidate her.
“I want your word that this ends,” he said, according to the recording, adding: “I will be completely straight with you. I am ready if I have to, I don’t want to, but I should take all this crap to the Capitol Hill Police and have them launch an investigation. And if I do that, that hurts me potentially big time.”
“Why would you even say that to me?” the woman responded. “… The Capitol Hill police? And what would you tell them, sir?”
Said Barton: “I would tell them that I had a three-year undercover relationship with you over the Internet that was heavily sexual and that I had met you twice while married and had sex with you on two different occasions and that I exchanged inappropriate photographs and videos with you that I wouldn’t like to be seen made public, that you still apparently had all of those and were in position to use them in a way that would negatively affect my career. That’s the truth.”
In a statement late Wednesday, Barton said a transcript of the recording provided by The Post may be “evidence” of a “potential crime against me.”
Who knows what (if anything) was running through Barton’s mind at the time? He’s a Conservative Republican Congressman who’s run as a champion of family values…and he allows himself to be filmed while spanking the monkey? What could POSSIBLY come back to haunt him?? Not that there’s anything really wrong with that sort of thing, but anyone in his position has to understand how something so potentially compromising might at some point be used against him.
Then there’s the whole hypocrisy angle….
The lewd Twitter photo that Barton acknowledged on Wednesday appears to have been captured from that video. The woman said she did not post the image herself. She shared phone numbers for Barton that match his personal and government-issued cellphones. Barton was not abusive or coercive in his interactions, the woman said, but said she felt he was “manipulative and dishonest and misleading” in his dealings with her and other women.
“It’s not normal for a member of Congress who runs on a GOP platform of family values and conservatism to be scouring the Internet looking for a new sexual liaison,” she said, explaining her motive for coming forward.
Rep. Barton may think himself the aggrieved party in this scenario, but it’s not difficult to surmise what may happen once his Conservative constituents begin to hear the lurid tales of masturbation on video and extramarital affairs. (Uh…they’ll be wanting to make their own masturbation videos??)
Is it just me, or does it seem the biggest offenders when it comes to sexual indiscretions are those who plug their “family values” bona fides the hardest?
Engaged, actually, and about to marry his third wife after two divorces. But he bravely defended the sanctity of marriage when the gays wanted to marry once. https://t.co/mkhJBkXj8v
— Dan Savage (@fakedansavage) November 23, 2017
Rep. Joe Barton of Texas is a 68-year-old married Republican. You know, the family values party that says “marriage should be between one man and one woman.” https://t.co/cU94OftUCq
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) November 22, 2017
Texas Congressman Joe Barton Apologizes for Sending Nude Pic to Woman, Not His Wife https://t.co/gPOCwsEv7q
— TMZ (@TMZ) November 22, 2017
Yes, that sound you hear may well be buzzards waiting to pick the carcass of Rep. Barton’s career clean. With any luck, even an abject apology won’t be able to salvage his career and mitigate his hypocrisy.
Karma can be a real bitch, knowhutimean??