Anti-gay Ohio state rep resigns after 'inappropriate behavior' with man

By Ray Downs  |  Nov. 19, 2017 at 8:18 PM
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Nov. 19 (UPI) -- An anti-gay state lawmaker in Ohio resigned after he allegedly had "inappropriate behavior" with another man in his state-funded office.

Ohio State Rep. Wesley Goodman, a 33-year-old Republican, was elected in 2016 on a staunchly social conservative agenda and used to work for the Council for National Policy, which is part of the Family Research Council that says homosexuality "is harmful to the persons who engage in it and to society at large."

Goodman resigned last week after House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger was told the state representative engaged in "inappropriate behavior" with a male staffer in his office, according to The Plain Dealer.

"We all bring our own struggles and our own trials into public life," Goodman said in a statement after resigning. "That has been true for me, and I sincerely regret that my actions and choices have kept me from serving my constituents and our state in a way that reflects the best ideals of public service."

Goodman was also accused of propositioning several young male staffers.

According to The Washington Post, Goodman was accused of attempting to fondle an 18-year-old son of a GOP donor in 2015 during a fundraising event at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel near Washington, D.C. Goodman allegedly pushed the teenager to come to his room and share his bed. Later in the night, the teen said he awoke to Goodman trying to unzip his zipper and he fled the room.

"I was shaken, dazed, confused and very upset," the teenager wrote.

The teen's parents complained to Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, who urged Goodman to drop out of the state representative race he was in. But Goodman refused and won the next year.

While Goodman was in office, some men have complained about his advances. Others said they had consensual relations with Goodman, who was well-known in Columbus' gay political scene, according to former GOP congressional staffer Chris Donnelly, who said he had sex with Goodman after the two met via a Craigslist ad.

"It became a running joke between me and my gay friends on Capitol Hill," Donnelly said. "It's not like it was some one-off thing."

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