November 1st, 2007
01:22 PM ET
9 months ago

State GOP lawmaker in gay sex scandal

Watch CNN's Carol Costello report on the latest scandal.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – It has been a truly scandalous few months for the GOP - for the third time in three months a Republican lawmaker is accused of soliciting sex with another man.

This time it's Washington State Rep. Richard Curtis - whose “I’m not gay” defense sounds a lot like Florida State Rep. Bob Allen's and Idaho Senator Larry Craig's.

Curtis told the Columbian newspaper in Spokane that he did not have sex with the man.

But the Spokane police department tell CNN a different story.

They say that on October 26, Curtis, dressed in women's lingerie, is alleged to have approached a young man in the "Hollywood Erotic Boutique."

The rest of the story is contained in a graphic 50 page police document. The young man alleges Curtis offered him $1,000 for unprotected sex at a nearby hotel.

And he says, "At the conclusion of the sexual activities, Curtis fell asleep."

The police report says the man, Cody Castagna, then took Curtis’ wallet - in order to extort money from the representative - and "threatened to publicly expose Richard Curtis' gay lifestyle to his wife."

At that point, police say Curtis called on an officer to investigate, hoping the incident would go away once police nabbed a suspect for taking his wallet.

Instead the media got wind of the case and found Curtis' alleged sex partner-who went public with his attorney.

"He gave me his wallet…as collateral for what he promised me" said Castagna.

It's a particularly ugly drama unfolding around another conservative Republican lawmaker. Like Florida State Rep. Bob Allen, who has pled not guilty to a charge of soliciting gay sex in July and Sen. Larry Craig, who is trying to withdraw his guilty plea on a charge of disorderly conduct in a restroom at Minneapolis Airport.

Curtis is married with children - and votes conservatively. He has voted against a domestic partnership bill, and a bill that would have outlawed discrimination based on sexual orientation.

On Wednesday he announced he was resigning his seat and said in a statement: “Events that have recently come to light have hurt a lot of people. I sincerely apologize for any pain my actions may have caused.

“This has been damaging to my family, and I don't want to subject them to any additional pain that might result from carrying out this matter under the scrutiny that comes with holding public office.”

The Spokane County prosecutor is considering whether to bring a charge of extortion against Castagna.

– CNN's Carol Costello


Filed under: GOP
soundoff (234 Responses)
  1. Neill C., Montgomery, Al

    When Hillary's affair comes out these same Democratic chest thumpers will be all over saying it is none of our business. She's suppressing the media (the liberal media – probably not too hard to suppress in her case. We'll have to wait for Drudge to break it again since it involves a Democrat) because she's afraid of the blowback.

    November 1, 2007 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  2. Janna, Dallas, TX

    Wouldn't it be nice if the evangelicals started their own party and left the true republican base.
    Posted By BC, The Buckle of the Bible

    That would be the best thing that could happen to America. If one religion didn't have it in its head that it's "the one true way", and didn't try to force us all to live by its beliefs, and didn't attempt to dominate our legislation, we could make so many advances. Religious rhetoric has no place in our legal system. It holds us back and makes us look like idiots.

    And BTW, there is no "one true" religion. There are many religions. And many of them encourage their members to play well with others. It's shameful that the GOP's religious affiliation looks for reasons to condemn rather than opportunities to open their minds.

    November 1, 2007 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  3. Jay, Knoxville, TN

    Typical politician...............trying to get something for nothing and crying when caught. Pay the boy!

    November 1, 2007 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  4. William, Atlanta

    I figured it out long ago that if someone is just too conservative and just too "out there" with his Christian piety and morality, he is either a) a gay living in the shadows; b) messing around on his wife; c) diddling the kiddies; or d) all of the above.

    November 1, 2007 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  5. Jon, Boulder, Colorado

    Couldn't happen to a nicer political party. I know I shouldn't stereotype all Republicans, they aren't all hypocrites (I hope), but there sure seems to be a pattern here ...

    November 1, 2007 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  6. Phil Chicago, Ill

    "Nothing kills me more than these "conservative" lawmakers who are telling me how to live my life"

    Posted by Rob – Battleground

    .

    Gee Rob – do tell us all, exactly HOW have Republicans told you how to live your life?

    By the way – how does it feel being a mouthpiece? No substance – just howling because someone of the opposite party got into trouble.

    November 1, 2007 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  7. FactJack

    He resigned because, unlike a democrat, he will not be able to get re-elected 6 more times..

    November 1, 2007 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  8. Tom, New York, NY

    Joe, from Maryland,

    You can thank George Bush for the divisiveness.... remember "You are either with us or against us?" comments? So, our leader taught us to either be with someone or against them.... no forgiving...only when you change the leader will the people change...

    November 1, 2007 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  9. Gorge

    Now if only if only Anne Coulter would come out of the closet!That would be "real news".I know she really must feel so repressed with all that guilt,anger and self-. rightous hipocricy.Her and Hillary would make a great couple,uniting our country once again.

    November 1, 2007 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  10. robert eugene oregon

    this gets more hilarious weekly, these better then thou conservative republicans getting caught in deceit and trickery. gentlemen as a gay man, i can tell you that you knew at a younger age that you were gay. you should have been man enough to come out before you married and screwed up a lot of peoples lives. i always thought that there would be alot of republicans in hell with us queers.ha ha ha. this whole country is going to hell between the lying republicans, the theiving t.v. evangalists, and the catholic church. and the coup de gras the twits running the country now.

    November 1, 2007 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  11. Christian, Tampa FL

    Another case where repression simply leads to a greater degree of perversion.

    November 1, 2007 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  12. Teresah Manual, New York, NY

    everyone one knows that when you sneak around and get 'off the clock' nooky, you're taking all and every chance in contracting, lord knows what! i am more interested in having the number of partners they maintain on, oh let's say, a monthly basis – 'cause you know for each 123 sexy time people, there's one to speak up as in this case .. and only because he didn't get his $1K! too funny! :) hahaha .. I'm about to pee in my red lingerie set

    November 1, 2007 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  13. John C Marietta, GA

    Typical republican repsonses. Say one ting and do the opposite and that's is fine. The first excuse for everything is always about a Democrat. Is there ANYTHING you people can do that you actually take resposibility for? Can you not see the hypocracy here. It will never get easier to see or understand. Is Everything you do really Hillory Clinton's fault?

    Your ideaology has failed our country so you blame the media. Iraq is a mess so you blame the Iraqi's. You started an unjust illeagal was and it is Hillory clintons's fault for not stopping you. This is why the Republican party is looked at so poorly in this country and by the rest of the world. Your so affraid to admint when you fail that you have lost all credibility and are goin gto fall at the hands of the whimpy, Spineless democrats. They could not beat you without your help. Keep it up and watch your party get flushed.

    November 1, 2007 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  14. Mike, Warren MI

    *puts on Think-like-a-Republican hat* He's gay, and Republican. And Republicans are against gays in general, and against gays in the military. Therefore, he's against our troops! OMG He's a terrorist! *takes off cap*

    Did I get that right Republicans? You guys are really good at trying to spin things that are unfavorable to your party. Why not just come out and say "Yeah, that guy's a dunce"?

    November 1, 2007 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  15. Joseph/Memphis, TN

    I betcha he is a self-righteous, everyone else is wrong type self-serving all American conservative. America's policticans are sliding down and that is the reason the remainder of the world is losing respect for America...think about how do youy teel one to stand tall, if you are sleepin with pigs and dogs.

    November 1, 2007 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  16. Dave, Austin TX

    Marilyn, you said "Even if the man is a gay politician, does it really matter? Let the man focus on his job and work for the American people like he said he would do…leave all these people alone!"

    *I* say if HE would leave the gays and lesbians alone, I'd be more than happy to leave HIM alone. But since he consistently voted AGAINST gay rights, freedoms, and protections in our laws, if I am to follow your example and speak out in favor of leaving gay people alone to live their lives... I must speak out again him for working to keep our government from doing so And he has less excuse than the heterosexual members of congress that voted as he did – they might have actually believed in what they were voting for, he was voting against his own kind to get power and money. Shameful.

    November 1, 2007 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  17. Frank, Burlington, VT

    It doesn't matter if the third person was gay or straight, the guy was destroying what Republicans base their moral "superiority" on–the intact family. How about Republicans talking more about lowering the divorce rate in America instead of blaming gay people for the decline of marriage? Getting caught with another person of either gender while married should be an embarrassment and cause for moral reflection regardless of party affiliation, but if you espouse a platform that encourages heterosexual monogamy and demonizes homosexual relationships while not addressing the fundamental issues surrounding heterosexual divorce, one is missing an opportunity to sincerely address one of societies ills.

    November 1, 2007 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  18. Bill, Arlington VA

    I wonder if I would get elected and keep office, as a Republican, if I stated in my campaign "I will have gay sex with men in adult theaters, sex clubs and from the internet, and maybe even with my over-18 interns. But, I will still govern honestly and fairly. now you all know...what can you do but accept me?"

    November 1, 2007 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  19. Gorge in Texas

    Dan.D in NORMAN, OK. May be yall been sniffin to many Nascar fumes.Just try to center your life on football and cow-chips and you should be ok,even if this story is a no-brainer. lol

    November 1, 2007 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  20. Amy, PA

    SEX sells, this is proof

    November 1, 2007 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  21. Salita

    Sorry but I dont see any one here on the dem side putting down gays. I see them talking about REPUBLICANS and their being pushed out of the closet.

    November 1, 2007 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  22. Lyle Adams, Spokane, WA

    Hey Neil of Alabama – take care of your republican problem, and condemn the act of this congressman first, then bring Hillary in the picture. Clintons have nothing to do with this. Its your party who run on "Family values" and not democrats. You guys spent 40 million investigating sex affiars while big wigs in your party have engaged in the bathroom sex. Hypocrites!

    November 1, 2007 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  23. Bill, the Twilight Zone, USA

    Neill C., Montgomery, Al: Hillary Clinton's "affair" with her staffer Huma Abedin will get on the news right after Fox News breaks the Ann Coulter/Condoleeza Rice tryst story.

    ... and you probably still buy the Republican FDR/Pearl Harbor fiction.

    November 1, 2007 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  24. IJ baltimore, MD

    James,

    The Navy Seal awarded the Medal of Honor was front page on CNN for two days. First when they announced he would get it, and then when he got it. This is our problem with the GOP, they never let the facts get in the way of a good liberal or gay bashing.
    The Dems and liberals are not jumping on gays or acting homophobic in any of these instances. It's the hypocrisy. This guy is accused of having solicted sex (illegal), then possibly having filed false police charges (illegal), not to mention the fact that he wanted unprotected sex, meaning that not only his own, but his wife's life meant squat to him. He was willing to risk the woman he married to suffer a long slow death to get off with a prostitute. That's absolutely horrible by anyone's measure..if true.
    The fact that the GOP gives that a pass in order to circle the wagons is frightening to any moral person on a level that is beyond belief.

    November 1, 2007 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  25. A practical lady

    Despite the obvious.... I find it appalling that he would risk his wife's physical health (the mother of his children) by having unprotected sex with a man he met at an adult bookstore who finds it acceptabel to have unprotected sex for money. That is so disgusting. It made me want to vomit. What if he has a disease? Way to go! Now, why again do they call it the conservative right?

    November 1, 2007 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
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