Well, that escalated quickly.
Apparently, when Republican elected officials aren't practicing or enabling sexual predation, they're busy projecting it onto others. At least, that's what appears to have happened this week when state Rep. Daryl Metcalfe (R-PA) was the victim of a gentle arm-touch during a committee meeting, and lashed out at fellow lawmaker, Democratic Rep. Matt Bradford.
As Bradford tried to finish a thought by gently patting Metcalfe on the forearm (over his clothes), Metcalfe went on a rant about how he loves his wife, and doesn't like men, and could he please go molest some Democrats who might like that sort of thing:
Look, I'm a heterosexual. I have a wife, I love my wife. I don't like men, as you might. [...]
Stop touching me all the time. It's like, keep your hands to yourself. Like if you want to touch somebody, you have people on your side of the aisle that might like it. I don't.
A stunned Bradford could only try and laugh it off, but now, the state's Democratic governor, Tom Wolf, is calling on Pennsylvania House leadership to remove Metcalfe from the state's civil rights committee, citing a history of discriminatory statements:
“Unfortunately, this is not an isolated incident but part of a disturbing pattern of behavior,” the Democratic governor said in a statement. “In light of this documented history of discriminatory statements, I urge House leadership to reexamine whether it is appropriate for Rep. Metcalfe to continue controlling the committee that oversees civil rights legislation.”
Most notably, Metcalfe cut openly gay state Rep. Brian Sims' microphone when he tried to discuss the Supreme Court's ruling on marriage equality. Metcalfe said that allowing Sims to continue "would have been an open rebellion against Almighty God and God’s word."
He has also consistently opposed civil rights protections for LGBT people in the state.
Making this all the more outrageous is that it takes place amid the backdrop of the Republican Party's embrace of GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore, a man accused of sexual abuse and child molestation by multiple women. In today's Republican Party, the very thought of being gay is apparently a more serious transgression than sexual assault and pedophilia.
Perhaps if they weren't so consumed by anti-gay bigotry and manufactured outrage, Republicans might take notice of the accused serial sexual predator in their midst. Then again, look at the man they chose to lead their party.