BY ROB SALERNO - It's time for another Gay Republican Sex Scandal - US Commonwealths Edition!
Actually, as far as scandals go, this one is not all that exciting. Last week, Puerto Rican TV show Dando Candela aired pictures they'd taken from a Grindr account of a nude man who seems to resemble anti-gay senator Roberto Arango. While he refuses to admit the pics are of him, today Arango offered his resignation from the Senate.
Grindr, of course, is a gay cruising app for smartphones.
The senator issued non-denials to the media, saying that he can't say for certain that the pictures were of him. He also offered that he regularly takes pictures of himself naked to document a weight-loss regimen he's on and suggests they could have come from that. Because naturally, if you're a straight man looking for dieting tips, you post pictures of your anus to Grindr.
(The NSFW version of the above photo appears not to have been released yet.)
While Puerto Rican politicians don't break neatly into Republicans and Democrats -- Arango represents the ironically named New Progressive Party -- he is active in the state's federal Republican Party and vice-chaired the 2004 Bush/Cheney campaign on the island.
His political career also includes a host of anti-gay actions, including banning gays from adopting children, a proposal to bar the state from recognizing any relationship other than male-female, and calling a political rival a fag at a public rally.
His now-obvious hypocrisy aside, I'm not sure I understand what the scandal is. No one is claiming he harassed anyone on the site, or even that he met anyone from the site. There's no allegation of illegal behaviour or wrongdoing. He does have a wife and daughter, but no one's coming forward with allegations of adultery, and who knows, maybe his wife knows about it.
It's a little curious that the pics have surfaced through Grindr, too. The app is notoriously stringent about preventing people from posting nude, explicit or even suggestive profile photos, so the photo where the man we assume is Arango is, shall we say, winking at the camera, must have come through a private chat. It does have the faint smell of a witchhunt here, and it's yet another case where a politician seemingly resigns simply because he's been found out as gay.
In other Gay Republican Sex Scandal news, Indiana Republican legislator Phil Hinkle, whom we first told you about two weeks ago, says he won't resign even as he admits he paid a young male prostitute to meet him at a hotel. With an incredible amount of chutzpah, he admits the encounter happened but insists that he's not gay, wasn't meeting the young man for sex, and says that he can't explain why he offered to pay a male prostitute to meet him in a hotel. Maybe he was just planning to say "No homo" afterward?