Look, people change. No one should be chained to who they used to be.
However, for people to acknowledge that change, particularly in politics, the changed individual has to take some responsibility for their past actions. If Ted Kennedy had spent the last 20 years of his life going to mass twice a day, that doesn’t mean we would have all forgotten he killed Mary Jo Kopechne.
Michigan state Rep. Jon Hoadley is no Ted Kennedy, nor did he drive his brother’s former campaign staffer off a bridge into shallow water. Hoadley did, however, show an interest in discussing crystal meth and calling women “breeders” — and, unlike Teddy, he enjoyed blogging about it.
To be fair, Ted didn’t really have any form of social media back in his day. (Hence there’s no picture of him by his car with the caption, “Going to take this sweet Oldsmobile Delmont 88 up to Chappaquiddick for the boat races this weekend. Hope I don’t do any swimming.”)
That’s Hoadley’s issue. Before he went into state politics, he used to have a now-notorious LiveJournal blog called “Rambling Politics.” Instead of using LiveJournal as most of us did back in the day — as an outlet for our emo drivel — Hoadley used it for discussion of drug use and creepy jokes about a 4-year-olds in a thong.
And, lo and behold, he’s been endorsed by Joe Biden.
— Jon Hoadley (@jonhoadley) September 16, 2020
Hoadley announced the endorsement on his Twitter page earlier this week.
“We’ve got some GREAT news! @JoeBiden is endorsing our campaign for #MI06!” Hoadley tweeted. “We’re working hard to flip a long-time red seat blue – join us.”
“Jon has been an advocate for working families and better schools as a State Representative for the last 5 years,” Biden said in the statement. “He works hard for the people of Southwest Michigan, and I am proud to support his campaign.”
Hoadley is trying to unseat longtime incumbent GOP Rep. Fred Upton in Michigan’s 6th Congressional District. While Upton has been ensconced in Congress since 1987, he’s also perhaps best known as the uncle of model Kate Upton.
Not to diminish the accomplishments of the congressman’s niece, but that doesn’t necessarily indicate someone whose long record of legislative accomplishment is going to keep him safe this November — particularly since, as Ballotpedia notes, it’s a district with multiple so-called “pivot counties,” counties that voted for Barack Obama in 2012 and Donald Trump in 2016.
That’s why Hoadley’s blogging history, which took place between 2004 and 2005 while he was a student at Michigan State University, could be a serious factor in the election.
According to a report in the New York Post last month, Hoadley — who is openly gay — blogged in 2005 about visiting a gay bar to “learn about crystal meth.”
Women, meanwhile, were referred to on Rambling Politics as “breeders,” obviously meant as a derogatory term for straight people who deign to procreate. “Breeders” are also “weird/bad dancers.”
He made a remark (one assumes, or hopes, in jest) about a “four year old wearing a thong” in a post about a flower girl at a wedding. His sexual partners are described as “victims.”
Meanwhile, perhaps just as important as his disturbing posts, he described working with Republicans as a “pain.”
The blog was deleted this summer, just before the Democratic primary. (Note to aspiring politicians with an awful social media history: Deleting it never works.)
Now, granted, this doesn’t mean Hoadley should be discounted — this took place well over a decade ago, after all. But therein lies the problem: Hoadley refuses to take responsibility for this, instead leaving it to his campaign to dismiss the blog as “bad college poetry.”
“Because of 150,000 deaths from COVID and a collapsing economy, Congressman Fred Upton’s chances of getting reelected are drowning so quickly that the Republicans have mistaken bad college poetry for a life preserver,” a spokeswoman told the Post.
Yes, Hoadley is a rising star in the party. He’s the minority vice chair on the state House Appropriations Committee. He’s a member of the American State Legislators for Gun Violence Prevention, the National LGBTQ Task Force and the National Caucus of Environmental Legislators.
He clicks off all of the progressive Democratic boxes. “Medicare for All”? Check. Green New Deal? Check. Endorsed by three of the four members of the “squad” — Democratic Reps. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota? Check.
However, at some point he needs to take some responsibility for this creeptastic LiveJournal. All he had to do was say he was sorry and that it was time to MoveOn.org.
That’s literally all he had to do — but instead, he sent a poor spokeswoman out there to say that, hey, you know what the real problem is? Fred Upton using Jon Hoadley’s ramblings on crystal meth, his sexual “victims” and a “four year old wearing a thong” as a distraction from COVID-19.
And now, despite the fact Hoadley has taken zero responsibility for his blog posts, Republicans are the ones who are taking the blame for using Hoadley’s own past against him, with the LGBT Victory Fund saying the National Republican Congressional Committee was perpetuating homophobic stereotypes by referring to Hoadley as a “pedo sex poet” due to his blogging, according to The Detroit News.
“Fred Upton is resorting to digging up Jon’s puerile college blog posts and pulling together out-of-context words and phrases because he can find nothing else to criticize about Jon’s public service record,” said Annise Parker, LGBTQ Victory Fund president and CEO.
There’s plenty to criticize, particularly when you consider Hoadley would have us sign on to both “Medicare for All” and the Green New Deal, the combination of which could theoretically cost nearly $100 trillion. However, he refuses to take responsibility for the disgusting things he wrote in college, including talk of a toddler in a thong. And Joe Biden is willing to endorse this hot mess.
Makes you wonder what would have happened if Trump had endorsed a Republican who had college scribblings like this. “Pedo sex poet” would be the kindest thing that they would be called, I can assure you that.
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