And the winner for most deplorable Republican House candidate goes to...Anthony Bouchard and it isn’t even close.
In an attempt to get ahead of a scandalous story that had the potential to ruin his chances of challenging Rep. Liz Cheney, who has been on the outs of the Republican Party ever since she voted to impeach former President Trump, Bouchard posted a Facebook Live video noting that he had a relationship with a 14-year-old girl when he was 18.
Wait, let me rephrase that. Bouchard actually didn’t admit to the girl’s age; instead, he claimed that it was just a teenage love story being dug up to hurt him.
“So, bottom line, it’s a story when I was young, two teenagers, girl gets pregnant,” the Wyoming state senator since 2017 said in the Facebook Live video. “You’ve heard those stories before. She was a little younger than me, so it’s like the Romeo and Juliet story,” the Casper Star-Tribune reports.
Except it isn’t. It isn’t at all. But you can never stop white people from trying to make their lives into Romeo and Juliet or Friends or Sex and the City.
He did say that he was only coming clean with this story “after learning that people were investigating it in opposition to his candidacy.”
Bouchard told the Star-Tribune that he and the girl married when she was 15 and he was 19 because they were both living in Florida, and if you put a mullet on a goat in Florida then you can marry that goat.
The couple got divorced three years later, the Star-Tribune reports.
“A lot of pressure. Pressure to abort a baby. I got to tell you. I wasn’t going to do it, and neither was she,” he said. “And there was pressure to have her banished from their family. Just pressure. Pressure to go hide somewhere. And the only thing I could see as the right thing to do was to get married and take care of him.”
The woman reportedly killed herself some years later when she was 20.
“She had problems in another relationship. Her dad had committed suicide,” Bouchard said in the video.
Not sure why he needed to put all of this woman’s business in the street but whatever. Bouchard raised the couple’s son on his own, but added that the two aren’t really on speaking terms.
“Sadly, he’s made some wrong choices in his life,” he said. “He’s almost become my estranged son. Some of the things that he’s got going on [in] his life, I certainly don’t approve of them. But I’m not going to abandon him. I still love him. Just like when he was born.”
If you’ve got this much going on, maybe a life in the public sphere isn’t the way to go.
Bouchard claims that the 13-minute Facebook video he posted was a result of “dirty politics,” the media and “the establishment swamp.” He encouraged his supporters to share the video, saying he wanted “everyone to know.”
“I don’t want to hide anything,” he told the Star-Tribune in a nearly hour-long phone call after the video was published. “I don’t want people drug into this. This is just crazy over politics.”
Bouchard added that he posted the video to control the narrative around a story that he knows is going to be published about his first marriage to a teen.
“We know the company that started this investigation. It’s a political opposition research company. We know who they are and then it turned into a U.K. media reporter, who’s called me,” he said.
Bouchard said he did not respond to the media outlet.
“This is really a message about how dirty politics is,” said Bouchard. “They’ll stop at nothing, man, when you get in the lead and when you’re somebody that can’t be controlled, you’re somebody who works for the people. They’ll come after you. That’s why good people don’t run for office.”
And apparently they still don’t.
Bouchard told the newspaper that he doesn’t believe Cheney or her team had any involvement in digging into his murky past and Cheney’s told the news station they had nothing to do with Bouchard’s past coming to light.