A Michigan attorney general candidate is making Joe Barton’s private parts a part of her 2018 campaign.
Without mentioning the Texas Republican’s name, Democratic candidate Dana Nessel says in a campaign ad that in “choosing Michigan’s next attorney general,” voters should ask, “Who can you trust most not to show you their penis in a professional setting?”
Nessel says that if successful next fall, she pledges not to “sexually harass my staff” or “walk around in a half-open bathrobe,” and “take all sex crimes seriously.”
Over the image of Barton, Nessel says she won’t use “your hard-earned tax dollars to silence victims.”
The video shows Barton’s image from a Washington Post story, which says Barton threatened to report a woman to Capitol Police if she exposed his sex life.
Barton announced Thursday that he would not seek reelection. The decision came after local GOP leaders, including state Sen. Konni Burton, encouraged him to forgo his bid for an 18th term.
In the Michigan ad, Nessel pledges to fight workplace harassment and take sex crimes seriously.
Over a string of images of men accused of sexual misconduct, she says “the last few weeks have taught us” that more women are needed “in positions of power.”
Barton is shown along with Alabama Republican Senate hopeful Roy Moore, who has been accused of sexual relationships with minors. The ad also includes television host Charlie Rose, ousted from CBS News job because of sexual harassment allegations, and President Donald Trump, who has also been accused of misbehavior.
The ad by Nessel, a Democrat, does not include any of the Democrats who have been accused of sexual misconduct in recent weeks, but makes a veiled reference to Michigan Democratic Rep. John Conyers. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Thursday called on Conyers to resign after he was accused of sexual harassment earlier this month.
The video had been viewed more than 30,000 times on YouTube by Thursday morning.
Last week Barton said Capitol Police offered to look into the leaked nude video for him, to see if he was a victim of revenge porn. Neither Barton nor Capitol Police have confirmed whether such an investigation is taking place.
Barton last week apologized for sending a sexually explicit video to a woman he was seeing, which was later shared on Twitter by an anonymous user. Barton has said he may be the victim of “revenge porn,” since the video was not intended to be shared publicly.
Another woman told the Star-Telegram Wednesday that Barton sent her sexually suggestive messages on Facebook, after she’d engaged in political discussions as a constituent.