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Republican Catfish

An Illinois Republican legislator is being accused of catfishing men with pictures of his ex-girlfriend.

ASL? Anyone who has ever entered an internet chatroom has been asked this question. After answering, many of the people asking the question will ask for proof of this. A good catfish will have plenty of pictures available to share with their potential victim. Republican Illinois State Legislator Nick Sauer allegedly did this to at least eight straight men, using pictures that his ex-girlfriend sent to him. 

These allegations came about because Sauer’s ex-girlfriend, Kate Kelly, filed a complaint with the Office of the Legislative Inspector General. In the complaint, Kelly alleges that Sauer used her pictures “to catfish other men using my privately shared naked photos.” Standard catfish behavior, although unusual for a man who would seemingly identify as being heterosexual. Kelly’s allegations continued, “Nick would use this account to direct message men with my photos to engage in graphic conversations of a sexual nature. The men believed they were communicating with me and Nick shared private details of my life.” Revenge porn? Possibly, however, if he was engaging in cybersex with these men that suggests something more psychological, albeit, still illegal. 

The leader of the Illinois Republican Party seemed to agree. Governor Bruce Rauner said that the first-term senator should step down. He is quoted by Politico as saying, “He should resign, and my understanding is that he’s going to resign and that’s the right thing for him to do.” Sauer did indeed resign, and in a statement, he didn’t deny the allegations. His statement said he would be distracted by “dealing with the allegations” and that his family had a part in his decision, “After speaking with my family, I feel it best to step away from my public responsibilities.”

There is an active investigation going on with the Chicago Police Department, which could have lead to him walking away from his position. In the state of Illinois, revenge porn is considered a felony. Posing as an ex on the internet is considered an act of revenge. 

Kelly says that Sauer admitted to her that he was using her pictures and urged her to forget the sordid situation. “He came to my house & confessed to catfishing men with my photos for two years to at least eight men. He was unable to provide the names and begged that I let it go,” eight different men, all straight. Why in the world would a heterosexual male catfish other straight men? 

One theory is that Sauer wanted to get revenge on his ex. The now-former legislator and Kelly had enjoyed a long distance relationship, where they would exchange graphic pictures. When Kelly moved to Chicago to be closer to her boyfriend, the relationship went sour. It is believed that Sauer was not happy about the end of the relationship. Yet, that does not answer the question at the center of this; why would a straight man engage in cybersex with other straight men on a more public forum such as Instagram?

At some point, Sauer had to expect that one of the men that he was engaging with would realize that there were two women who looked like Kelly. Which is, in fact, how the whole thing came out. One of the gentlemen that Sauer as Kelly had corresponded to reached out to her real account and informed her of the betrayal. There is a chance he wanted her to know.

Whatever the reason for him doing this, a once-promising career has been brought to a crashing halt. Sauer also faces jail time because he wanted to see another man’s penis or wanted to exact revenge on a woman that no longer wanted to be romantically connected with him. 

Maybe catfishing men was his way out of a life he no longer wanted to live?

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Republican Catfish
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