By now you have probably heard about the resignation of Ohio state representative Wes Goodman. A conservative Republican and former aid to Congressman Jim Jordan, Goodman was compelled to resign when he was caught having extramarital—yet consensual—sex with another man in his office. Goodman is like Roy Moore, just another Republican being sacrificed on the altar of puritanical notions of morality that really have no place in electoral politics.
While Moore, being the seasoned veteran has courageously bucked the prudish GOP establishment and remained in the Alabama U.S. Senate race despite a growing number of allegations of sexual “misconduct” happening nearly 40 years ago while Moore was in his early 30s and almost all the women involved were above the age of consent.
As we’ve learned the hard way, not a single piece of the conservative agenda can be implemented—or even pursued—without solid control of all three branches of government. Still, some believe that these crucial majorities are less important than the moral character of individual candidates and office holders. We need Republicans who will do what is necessary to get elected and keep Democrats from holding office. How they conduct themselves in public or private life only matters insofar as it keeps them from achieving that goal.
Unreasonable litmus tests are being applied to candidates by some Republicans, as if marital fidelity or refraining from soliciting sex with children were reliable indicators of whether a politician can be trusted to vote in a way that gives his party political victories. If not for the priggish expectations and outdated sexual mores of some voters, the GOP could have a far more bragging rights in Washington and in state governments.
This brings us back to Wes Goodman, a solid conservative by any political metric. Here are just some of his conservative bonafides:
I have never run for office before. I got into this race because too many of our career politicians have stopped fighting for what matters to us. Continuing to elect the same people and expecting different results for our county, our state, and our nation will not work.
I’m proud to be the endorsed conservative Republican in this race. We have been endorsed by Congressman Jim Jordan, Ohio Right to Life, the Associated Builders and Contractors of Ohio, Ohio Pro-Life Action, Republican Liberty Caucus of Ohio, Citizens for Community Values Action PAC, Ohio Family First PAC, the Ohio Citizens PAC, and business leaders, pastors, community leaders, and current and former elected officials across the district. I also have the highest rating in this race from Buckeye Firearms Association. I’m the only candidate in this race who has pledged to oppose tax increases.
Pro-life, family values, gun rights, and opposition to tax increases. This is exactly the kind of person we need on the Republican farm team but self destructive “stupid party” members have aborted a promising political career over nothing more than some less than discrete sex Goodman had with a man who was not his wife, and fewer than 50 allegations from young people that Goodman made sexual offers or advances either in person or via social media.
Ohio State Speaker Cliff Rosenberger (R-Clarksville) was quickly notified and, in turn, asked Goodman to resign from his position — which he did. But many people have long been aware of Goodman’s inappropriate sexual behavior; behavior that is very different than his married “family man” persona, IJR has learned.
Goodman has a reputation of reaching out to those involved in politics via Facebook Messenger — but things tend to quickly turn south, as he has been known to flirt with men, solicit sex, and even send pictures of his genitals, according to dozens of sources. The majority of the people he targets are between the ages of 18 and 24 and have had very little interaction with him personally.
In many instances of his alleged sexual misconduct, Goodman apparently offered to be a “mentor” for those looking to get into politics. Because of the power he had, his victims say they were afraid to report instances of abuse for fear of damaging their own political careers.
Goodman clearly has the social media savvy that is crucial in today’s politics, is apparently very generous with his time, and appears tuned in to the needs of millennials. These are all areas where Republicans tend to be weak but sanctimonious moralizers discount all that in favor of their Victorian views on sexuality. Like Roy Moore, Goodman also seems to recognize and honor the age of consent for the most part.
Democrats have learned the important lesson that the time to hold people accountable for their moral decisions is after they have outlived their political utility, while the GOP still foolishly squanders political potential still in its prime all for the sake of an antiquated obsession with honor and virtue.
This is why even when Republicans win, they lose. The desire to be represented by honorable people who practice what they preach is as naive and unrealistic—not to mention hateful—as expecting people to use bathrooms appropriate to their biological sex. Republicans should all be focused above all on winning elections over Democrats and winning legislative victories even if the results don’t match their campaign rhetoric. Instead, many Republicans inexplicably choose to live in a fantasyland where truth and decency are considered more important than victory.