Donald Trump is not the only Republican leader currently embroiled in a sex scandal, but he would do well to emulate the response to being caught in a blatant case of infidelity that Iowa Senate Majority Leader Bill Dix (R) was forced into today.
The Republican state senator, who is married with three children, resigned from the Iowa Senate after being caught on video kissing a female lobbyist who most definitely was not his wife.
The video was taken at a Des Moines tavern, Waveland Tap, and originally posted by the local political website Iowa Starting Line. The people who took the mobile phone video were not investigative journalists or rival politicians, but just ordinary bar patrons who recognized the lawmaker from his appearances on local news reports, including those about the $1.75 million sexual harassment settlement made to a former Iowa Senate Republican staffer late last year.
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The patrons noticed the appropriately-named Senator Dix “flirting with and occasionally kissing a younger woman at the bar,” according to the website’s account. The woman has since been identified as a registered lobbyist for various municipality groups at the Iowa Statehouse for the past two years.
Senator Dix had already been facing calls for his resignation over his role in firing the woman who eventually was awarded the harassment settlement just hours after she filed a complaint about a toxic work environment, all while continuing to insist her dismissal was solely based on job performance issues. A report detailing the internal investigation of the harassment claim was released quietly over the Thanksgiving holiday last year and contradicted some of Dix’s public statements about the whole affair.
Ironically, Dix had recently completed newly instituted sexual harassment training that the Iowa legislature started mandating after last year’s scandal.
In the wake of Dix’s resignation, Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds (R) declined to comment on the specifics of the incident until she had met with Dix to hear the details directly from him. She did offer vague platitudes about public expectations for elected officials in the meantime.
“Iowans hold their elected officials to a high standard. They expect us to lead, and I expect to lead,” Reynolds said, according to The Des Moines Register.
“I’m extremely disappointed with what I’m hearing, but until I have an opportunity to hear his story I’m not going to comment.”
As usual, the loudest defenders of public propriety turn out to be the worst offenders.
You can watch the video of Dix’s dalliance in the clip below: