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Lawmakers urge Gaetz to resign as new details of DOJ probe emerge

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Congressman Matt Gaetz (R-FL) is facing calls to resign as more details emerge amid the federal probe into his alleged sexual relationship with a 17-year-old.

The Justice Department is now focusing their investigation on Gaetz’s involvement with multiple women who were recruited online for sex and received cash payments, according to a new report by The New York Times.

Investigators believe Joel Greenberg, the former tax collector in Seminole County, Fla., who was indicted last year on a federal sex trafficking charge and other crimes, initially met the women through a website that exchanges dates for gifts and travel, according to The Times. Greenberg then introduced the women to Gaetz, the report said.

Text messages and mobile payment receipts reportedly indicate Gaetz and Greenberg instructed the women to meet at specific locations and told them the amount of money they were willing to pay.

In some cases, Gaetz asked the women to help find others who would be interested in having sex with him and his friends, people familiar with the matter told The Times.

A new report by CNN also alleges that Gaetz showed lawmakers, including while on the House floor, photos and videos of nude women and talked about his sexual relationships with them.

Sources told CNN that Gaetz displayed the images of women on his phone and talked about having sex with them to his colleagues.

“It was a point of pride,” one of the sources said of Gaetz.

CNN noted that there has been no indication these alleged pictures are connected to the DOJ investigation.

Meghan McCain, conservative commentator and daughter of former Republican senator the late John McCain, urged Gaetz to resign following the CNN report.

“This is vile, abhorrent and beneath the office he holds. No woman in congress should feel comfortable working with him. Resign. (also don’t start with the cancel culture bull****, any man in any place would be fired for this garbage),” McCain tweeted.

House minority leader Kevin McCarthy said that Republicans would support removing Gaetz from his committee assignments if allegations that he traveled and had a sexual relationship with an underage girl are proven true.

“Those are serious implications. If it comes out to be true, yes, we would remove him if that’s the case,” McCarthy told Fox News on Tuesday. “But right now Matt Gaetz says that it’s not true and we don’t have any information. So let’s get all the information.”

Democratic Congressman Ted Lieu (D-CA) expressed similiar thoughts.

“If it’s true Rep Matt Gaetz engaged in sex trafficking, he needs to resign and be prosecuted. In the meantime, you can’t have Gaetz sitting on the Congressional Committee that has oversight over the Department that is investigating him,” Lieu tweeted.

Gaetz has denied any allegation of wrongdoing and said he is a victim of a $25 million extortion plot executed by David McGee, a former federal prosecutor.

“Over the past several weeks, my family and I have been victims of an organized criminal extortion involving a former DOJ official seeking $25 million while threatening to smear my name,” Gaetz said in a statement. “We have been cooperating with federal authorities in this matter and my father has even been wearing a wire at the FBI’s direction to catch these criminals.”

Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy

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GOP Demands Answers: Jan 6 Committee, FBI Won’t Release Info on Suspected Fed Informant Ray Epps

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The mystery of Ray Epps continues to grow. Multiple videos of Epps have surfaced showing him repeatedly demanding pro-Trump rioters should enter the U.S. Capitol on January 6. Epps’ involvement has led many to speculate that he was an FBI plant who incited the January 6th insurrection. One video of Epps shows Trump supporters shouting “no” to his suggestion of entering the Capitol and even begin to shout that he is a “fed.”

Texas Representative Ronny Jackson tweeted Thursday, “Who’s Ray Epps? Why did he mysteriously disappear from the FBI wanted list? Why can’t we see what he said to the Cheney/Pelosi Witch Hunt committee? Was the FBI involved in any way in planning 1/6? Why won’t they answer ANY of these questions? Something is NOT right here!”

A lot of questions need to be answered in deed. Jackson’s tweet comes after Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) questioned Jill Sanborn, the executive assistant director of the FBI’s national security branch, during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Tuesday.

Cruz got zero answers from Sanborn’s testimony, only causing further curiosity about Epps; just as Jackson suggests. The New York Post transcribed some of the testimony, as follows:

“A lot of Americans are concerned that the federal government deliberately encouraged illegal and violent conduct on Jan . 6 ,” Cruz (R-Texas) told Jill Sanborn, the executive assistant director of the FBI’s national security branch during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.

“My question to you – – and this is not an ordinary law enforcement question, this is a question of public accountability — did federal agents or those in service of federal agent s actively encourage violent and criminal conduct on Jan. 6 ?” he asked.

 Sanborn responded by saying she couldn’t disclose “sources and methods.”

“Ms. Sanborn, was Ray Epps a fed?” asked Cruz after stating that Epps was captured on video the night of Jan. 5, 2021 rousing people to “get into the Capitol.”

“Sir, I cannot answer that question,” replied Sanborn, who added that she was “aware of the individual,” but didn’t have “specific background” on him.

Cruz went on and stated that on Jan. 6, Epps was seen talking to rioters moments before they ripped down police barricades outside the Capitol.

 Sanborn responded that she couldn’t answer whether Epps urged them to knock down the barricades.

Cruz then noted that Epps initially appeared on a poster issued by the FBI seeking information about people connected to criminal activity on Jan. 6, but was absent from another FBI “seeking information” poster distributed July 1.

Cruz then notes,  “magically, Mr. Epps disappeared from the public posting” and “according to public records, Mr. Epps has not been charged with anything. No one’s explained why a person videoed urging people to go to the Capitol, a person whose conduct was so suspect the crowd believed he was a fed, would magically disappear from the list of people the FBI was looking at.”

Even more curious, the January 6th Committee investigating the riot has simply said claims that Epps was an informant were “unsupported.” In a statement on Twitter, the panel said “Epps informed us that he was not employed by, working with, or acting at the direction of any law enforcement agency on January 5th of 6th or at any time, & that he has never been an informant for the FBI or any other law enforcement agency.”

Yet the Committee will not release interview transcripts. Yet the Committee expects the American people to just accept their vague and useless tweet? No way.

John Blischak is the attorney for Epps, and told the Epoch Times that his client is not working with, or for the FBI. But…Blischak himself is a former FBI agent. Something smells fishy.

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