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Political Editors / Oct. 24, 2019

Rep. Katie Hill's Brewing #MeToo Scandal

Freshman Democrat admits to polyamorous affair with a young female staffer.

A rather lurid scandal has come to light regarding an upstart and openly bisexual freshman Democrat representative. Rep. Katie Hill (CA), vice chair of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, is in hot water over revelations of a polyamorous affair between herself, her soon to be ex-husband Kenny Heslep, and a young female campaign staffer. Heslep called it a “throuple.”

Hill claims she ended the unusual two-year-long arrangement this past May, ostensibly because she wanted to focus “entirely” on her “important” work. Heslep, Hill’s husband of almost 15 years who she’s now in the midst of divorcing, disputes that claim, insisting that Hill ended the polyamorous relationship due to another affair she started with another man — her own legislative director, Graham Kelly. Hill publicly disputes the allegation of an affair with Kelly, blaming it on her “divorce from an abusive husband who seems determined to try to humiliate me.” However, Hill does not dispute her “inappropriate” polyamorous affair.

If those optics alone aren’t bad enough, there are #MeToo implications. Uncovered text messages among Hill, her 22-year-old staffer, and Heslep suggest that both Hill and Heslep acted abusively toward the young staffer. RedState, which broke the story, notes, “In the age of #MeToo, activists contend that when a large power imbalance exists, such as between a CEO and an employee, the employee is incapable of giving consent. Even assuming that true consent existed at the beginning of the relationship, the power imbalance could keep an employee in a bad relationship for fear that they will lose their job or suffer other negative consequences.” That’s true whether the offender in power is a man or a woman.

The House Ethics Committee has launched an investigation of Hill because a relationship with Kelly would violate new House rules. For her part, Hill is demanding U.S. Capitol Police investigate the release of compromising photos of her.

The Leftmedia initially ignored the story, eventually only grudgingly opting for ho-hum stories consisting almost entirely of Hill’s denials, counter accusations, and victimitis. So, once again, we’re left to imagine the coverage if she had an “R” after her name. A final irony: Hill represents a “swing” district. Make of that what you will.

(Edited.)

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