by Duluth News Tribune
August 20, 2012 at 7:24 am in Duluth News Tribune
Kerry Gauthier was released from St. Luke’s hospital in Duluth on Saturday and Democratic Minnesota House leader Paul Thissen said he talked to the lawmaker after that. Continue Reading
Tags: Breaking, Minnesota, Politics, updates 70 Comments »
I have to agree that Gauthier should resign immediately. He can no longer be respected and certainly has lost the confidence of most Duluthians.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 114 18
Please do remember this is not a ‘gay’ issue; it’s about a middle aged adult having sexual contact with a teen.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 107 41
In a public place, which, last I checked, is still illegal.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 102 15
I do agree with your one point….the fact that he had contact with a male is not the issue. The fact that he had this contact in a public rest area is disgusting. Imagine what the tourists must think about our city. I could care less if he is gay or not. I’m not sure how he was able to avoid charges. Yes, I know the age of consent is 16. The authorities said that …well.. nobody saw him so we are not going to file charges. When did “nobody saw this happen” prevent people from being charged for a crime? The way this whole thing was handled by the authorities makes you wonder. I hope Gauthier recovers his health….but he is not fit to serve Duluth. People are hurting from the flood…we need someone in St. Paul.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 93 11
My post was directed tward Mac
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 28 8
Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.
Why is this situation even considered news-worthy? Seems like a witch-hunt against Gathier for sure. Do we really care about who has consensual sex with persons younger than themself? People of all ages, race, religion, sexual orientation and other have always had sexual encounters with people younger than themselves, so why is the situation with Gathier being treated any differently? The key word here is “Consensual”. Also, please consider the fact that the teenager admitted to Gathier and police that he lied about being 18. However, in the state of Minnesota, the legal age of consent is 16. No illegal act was committed, so what other reason is this story being shoved in our faces, other than the DNT trying to ruin Gathier’s professional and personal lives? I think it is very sad that the DNT has stooped to this level. It’s not as though he was being a pedophile. He was only having consensual sex with a person younger than himself. The only questionable thing here should be the location in which the two chose to meet and have consensual sex, as public places are not a good choice for those encounters.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 30 137
Connie….I’m not sure if you have kids or not. But say you do….how would you feel if your 17 year old son or daughter was having sexual contact with a 56 year old man at a public rest area? I know the age of consent is 16….This doesn’t set a real great example for our young people.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 110 12
It IS as if he’s a pedophile. That’s what you seem to be missing. The only time the age of consent comes into play is to keep a 17 or 18-year-old from being prosecuted for behaving like a couple that might be 16 & 17 or 17 & 18 might behave.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 73 23
You should know the definition of a word before you start using it. Which you don’t, so don’t throw a word as weighty as that around so willy-nilly.
Being attracted to a 17 year old is perfectly normal.
Performing sexual acts with a 17 year old is not.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 53 19
A 56 year old man being attracted to someone of the same sex is not normal, being attracted to a seventeen year old is called being a pedophile !
Hot debate. What do you think? 30 19
Vespa, welcome to 2012! Quick note to bring you up to speed . . . . what Gauthier did is not illegal.
The big concern here is that lack of the most basic judgment and demonstrating behavior befitting an elected official. Generally speaking, sex in the woods is something polite society frowns upon by people in public office.
My own personal opinion is that if this 56 year old guy had physical interaction with a 17 year old female, this would have been done days ago, but people are trying to be sensitive to the gay issue. (Bear in mind I’m a gay man. So is my partner.)
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 13 23
Your own personal feelings on homosexuality aside, the definition of a pedophile is someone who is attracted to pre-pubescent individuals.
Gauthier does not deserve that label. What he did was wrong, but it was not as wrong as what the Minnesota State-Mankato football coach is accused of.
Hot debate. What do you think? 11 19
Connie, well said. I agree. Nothing to see here….move along, people.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 21 93
Thanks Officer Barbrady
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 41 9
Connie…actually if read the comments so far nobody cares that was a gay or sexual issue, it’s about a lack of judgement which the DNT is right in bringing to everyone’s attention when is involving a state representative.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 93 10
Brace yourself Connie, I cannot even believe I’m saying this . . . . if a 50 year old man had sexual interaction with a 17 year old girl, the outrage would be EXPONENTIALLY greater. The ‘everyone has sex with someone of a different age’ argument is crap.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 89 7
@Connie the homophobe Republicans hate GLBT people and women. Look at the crazy GOP hate filled Akin legitimizing the rape of women. Typical Tea Party Republican conservative white male hate just like the local hate filled Republican hate seen on the DNT. At least Akin insured an even larger Obama victory and 4 more years of true prosperity.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 16 64
Yikes Connie. An elected official gets lonely and seeks out clandestine sex at a public rest stop through an internet ad. He then continued on even though the boy who showed up does not look anything close to 18 (according to the police statement). And you see nothing wrong with this scenario?
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 95 12
One of the issues that he should not be trusted is one that the DNT has not addressed. In the Star Tribune story: http://www.startribune.com/politics/statelocal/166487336.html?refer=y
It states that Gauthier posted the ad, stating he was 43. What else is Kerry lying about? What else is he covering up?
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 80 12
Zellers certainly showed tolerance and understanding while giving Gauthier a “responsible” amount of time to resign. He waited a whole day!
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 19 55
I do not see how Gauthier’s actions are defensible.
Regardless of gender, a 50+ year old man going to the internet to find a (supposedly) 18 year old to provide oral sex and following through when that 18 year old (supposedly) looks far younger than 18 is questionable in and of its own accord; however ‘legal’ it may be, it still seems predatory to me.
Set aside the questionable actions, I still see a very illegal act in the fact that this all took place at one of our public rest stops and was noticable enough for someone to call the police. Since when is having oral sex in the woods of a rest stop legal?
Bottom line is that this is a public representative and we simply cannot tolerate this sort of public behavior… Whether it be the representative with a 17 or 18 year old male or even a female of his own age. Heck, it could be his wife and its still completely inappropriate.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 88 9
Who among us hasn’t made out at a highway wayside/rest area? There’s something erotic about it, yes?
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 16 68
This isn’t his first time, Like he said to police. Several people have admitted seeing this freak at the same location as well as mentioning his craigslist ads. This is a sad human being with some obvious issues! He needs to be out of Govt and seek immediate help. How many other “Minors” has this guy preyed upon?
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 85 16
I have no idea why legislators wrote the age of consent laws the way they did. In my mind the purpose should have been to protect a 18 year old from being charged with statutory rape from messing around with his 16 year old boy/girl friend who consented to being sexually active with him/her.
The fact that some have seen nothing wrong with Gauthiers behavior since it was legal makes me wonder if they have ever had kids themselves. This is disgusting behavior period. Mr Gauthier had a campaign commerical when he was running the first time that said one of his goals was to protect the children in his district…..how does this action (and any others we may find out about in the future) jive with that ? Is this how we want our underage kids “protected” ? I think they need to be protected from people like him.
As others have said, this isn’t a gay or straight issue. Mr Gauthier is free to live his life as he sees fit. If he likes guys, fine. But having a 56 year old guy, who I believe I read lied about his age and said he was 43 (as though that makes it ok) chasing teenagers for sexual satisfaction is just flat out unacceptable behavior by anyone male or female.
We as parents have lots of battles to wage to keep our kids safe throughout their younger years until they become adults without having to worry about 56 year olds chasing our teenagers for sex and then using the “well it’s legal, so why not ?” defense. Lots of things are legal that aren’t proper, decent and are disgusting……this is one of them.
I don’t know what the magic age is for this “age of consent” issue to be appropriate, but I know for sure it shouldn’t cover a 56 year old with raging hormones for young blood.
Resign now and good riddance !
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 79 8
From Gauthier’s campaign website: “I believe it is of the utmost importance that we work every day to protect our children and our community.” In his defense, he didn’t specify protecting really cute teenage boys with questionable judgment.
The man is a pig and a predator. Goodbye, good riddance, go ahead and let the door hit you on the way out.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 87 10
As a father, if a 56 year old man solicited sex from a 17 year old son OR daughter, I’d need to be restrained from harvesting the guys gonads and feeding them to his dog.
Nuts are bad for dogs.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 26 6
Well said MAC, and true. This is predatory, no matter what the law says. And if this was daddy’s little girl, some father may have put him in a pine box.
But it’s time I believe to discuss the statutory laws. Because far too many 18 year old boys are going into prisons as sex offenders for simply loving their girlfriends who are 15 and 364 days.
It’s a complex topic….veiled and difficult to quantify….maturity and development…and prosecuters need to exercise better discretion.
Step down tomorrow.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 45 9
Nathan, personally, I don’t believe it is a very complex issue.
I believe North Dakota has a similar low age of consent, but there is an upper boundry to that age of consent. I want to say that a 16 year old is the age of consent but that the older individual must be under the age of 22 (or some age similar) this is so that there is some leeway in the younger ages…once an individual is 18 he/she can go sleep with whoever they want, but below that they are still considered a minor and afforded some protection from older individuals who know how to get a younger person to ‘give consent’
Let’s consider a similar case. Most 17 year old’s are either juniors or seniors in High School. What would be the public perception of a 53 year old teacher recieving oral sex from a 17 year old student? Most likely, that teacher would end up in prison.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 55 6
What might be equally alarming, is that there are folks who actually defending his actions as if they see nothing wrong with it. What the Heck are they thinking? What is wrong with you people??? There is NO excuse for these actions and its NOT acceptable behavior PERIOD!!!!!
No matter the political or sexual preference!
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 69 7
I believe that Gauthier is toast. His story has gone international on sites like Drudge, The Huff post, the Daily Mail (UK), etc. If Duluth reelects this guy they will cement their position as a poster child for dysfunctional representation. Why am I not surprised. One needs look no further than the support Sharla Gardner voiced when Kerry got caught. Did she condemn his behavior? No she ignored it and pleaded for understanding. Understand this, Sharla, Kerry’s behavior is inexcusable and predatory. No understanding is required.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 52 6
I agree with Hugh. I don’t want to make this a political issue. But why is the local DFL so silent on this? The republican and democratic leaders in St. Paul have called for Gauthier to step down. Its not often that those sides agree. If the guy was a republican I would feel the same way. We have had many republicans over the years guilty of all sorts of things. And forgive me but…..I still question why he wasn’t at least charged with doing this in a public area. And why did it take so long for the police to admit that they were looking into Gauthier? The story leaked out to the DNT and then the authorities had no choice to come clean on the information they had. An NFL player gets a speeding ticket and you know about it within a few hours. I just hope this incident is not part of a larger pattern of behavior. We have all followed national stories and they seem to have lengthy timelines with multiple incidents.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 50 6
Bauer, I think Gauthier is a predator. The age difference is just too alarming. But what is too much of age separation? It is quite hard to quantify….right?
Not every 17 year old is 17 intellectually, as with 25 year Olds. It’s one of those topics that unless you know the individuals, only extremes are easy to define.
It’s a topic that there is little agreement on…except in the extreme cases.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 31 9
Gauthiers actions are nothing short of predatory. His indiscretion and his predatory actions have given the gay community a huge black eye.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 50 9
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 52 4
Man-on-boy sex makes Gauthier completely unfit for office. Gauthier lied about his age in the ad, lied when initially questioned by police about what happened and now is deathly afraid of facing reporters while flood aid is hanging in the balance. If Gauthier lived in a less liberal state, this sicko would be in prison with his new best friend Bubba.
http://www.VoteSmart.org lists Gauthier’s professional experience: ‘Social Services, Field of Addiction and Recovery’ and lists some organizations he is or was involved with:
Former Member, Board of Directors, Spirit Valley Youth Center – Yikes!!
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 56 5
Good point. It’s probably appropriate to ask if there are any victims who frequented the Spirit Valley Youth Center who would like to come forward, ALA , Jerry Sandusky. I suspect that there are. Kerry, if you’re monitoring this thread, do you really want to risk blemishing the DFL by clinging to your seat?
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 45 5
“Blemishing the DFL” ?
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 26 9
I know, I know, it’s a redundancy, but I’m trying to give the DFL an opportunity to do the right thing. I still haven’t seen a single denouncement of Gauthier by a local DFLer. Do you think that they are even capable of admitting one of their own really screwed up? Here’s their chance to prove me wrong. What say you, Sharla?
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 35 9
Resignation should have been old news by now. A 56 yr old in a position of power taking to task a 17 yr old in a rest area? How is that not illegal? We need new laws and soon….
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 44 6
Yes, it should be old news but Gauthier has been silent. I know he had a health issue…glad he was able to leave the hospital. Does he think he can avoid the subject? And now the story is old enough that its going national. The New York Daily News has picked up on the story. I’m guessing CNN, Fox and MSNBC and the rest will be on it shortly. Not a great way to put Duluth in the spotlight.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 40 4
Obviously Gauthier will be paying the price for his indescretions but it has not taken long for the vultures to throw there hats in the ring. Its like a feeding frenzy where the sharks are going to pick the meat from his bones.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 6 43
You might have chosen a more appropriate analogy than Gauthier’s meat being picked. People aren’t acting like vultures. They’re acting like responsible adults who are outraged that a public official would prey on children and they want accountability. That you disagree is very telling.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 41 5
Mark, if Gauthier’s behavior only rose to the level of what you call an “indiscretion”, was Jerry Sandusky equally indiscreet? People need to stop making excuses fro Gauthier and bring all pressure necessary to convince him to resign BEFORE the general election. Anything less is to condone what he did with/to that kid.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 42 4
The head of the state DFL, minority leader, told him to not seek reelection…that’s as strong as you get. He even is trying to remove him from the ballot…..which is hard to do.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 27 8
I don’t see how they can remove him from the ballot. They can remove his DFL tag, but I don’t think they can remove him from the ballot. He was never charged with anything.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 25 5
Representative Gauthier should absolutely resign, and do so forthwith. His reprehensible and intolerable behavior has rendered him unfit to be seated in the Mn House of Representatives. He is a scornful disgrace to our city and state and his presence in “the People’s House” brings shame to all Minnesotans.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 44 4
My prediction is he will stay on the ballot and be re-elected by the DFL.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 26 8
May the good Lord help us all, if that actually comes true!
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 20 5
Well….the DNT has just reported that Gauthier says he will still run. Now it will be interesting to see if the local DFL stands with him or not. They have been silent so far.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 23 3
Well…looks like labor is standing with Gauthier….
Quote from the article….
Reyelts said Gauthier was with labor leaders Alan Netland and Dan O’Neil during the interview this morning, with both saying they supported Gauthier’s re-election bid.
“They felt he was the best candidate for labor,” Reyelts said.
I guess I’ve now seen everything……If someone wrote this in a book I would think it was a fantasy novel.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 32 4
How pathetic this has become. He is the best they got????? Really???? Absolutely Delusional…
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 33 5
IMO, he likely won’t be re-elected, but I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if the brain dead Duluth DFL voters send him back to St. Paul.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 25 7
That Netland still thinks Gautier is the best candidate speaks volumes about Netland and organized labor leadership’s character. If I was still an employed union member, I’d now be fighting to get Netland removed from his position. His endorsement of Gauthier is a black eye on all organized labor.
He could have done any crime and they would back him, it’s a political thing- i.e. any democrat (no matter if they are a pedophile) would be better than a republican seems to be the general theme.
And still not a peep from local DFL party leaders. What are they waiting for? As far as Alan Netland, his opinion is worth about as much as his credibility after today.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 30 5
Wow…the local DFL woke up……..
“Duluth Rep. Tom Huntley said today he strongly opposes Rep. Kerry Gauthier’s decision to stay in the race for re-election to the Minnesota House and called his DFL colleague “a child molester.”
“It will hurt us in every race in the state. (Republicans) will try to imply that we’re supporting him,” Huntley said. “As far as I’m concerned, he’s a child molester. And I realize that it’s not illegal what he did. … But I think one needs to consider the ethics of the person, and do you want someone like that in the Legislature?”
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 37 2
Might be the smartest thing Huntley has ever said!
Since the local DFL loves to attend protests, I suggest that we organize a protest against the DFL’s silence in this matter. What do the rest of you think? We could meet at city hall(with a permit, of course), invite the news media, and explain to everyone why we are opposed to Gauthier remaining on the ballot. The GOP Senate candidate in Missouri made a fool of himself with his rape comment and is asked to step down. Gauthier solicited and engaged in sex with a minor at a public rest stop, and he still feels entitled to stay in office? Larry Craig, the toe tapping Congressman from Idaho, didn’t even actually have sex in a public place and he was gone. Why does the local DFL leadership remain silent about Gauthier? It is my hope that every conservative candidate running will exploit the DFL’s tacit condoning of Gauthier’s behavior and keep it a front page issue right up until the election. Not only will Gauthier loose, but many of his enabling party members, as well.
Think about it. Protests twice a week at city hall until Gauthier resigns. It could happen.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 26 5
Whether or not Gauthier broke a law, he is a creepy, pedophile, child molester. He should be completely ashamed of himself, and so should any of you who vote for him. Grow a pair, and know what’s right and what’s wrong. If you don’t get this, your moral compass is broken or nonexistent.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 35 4
This quote taken from Gauthier’s twitter site:
“Tarryl Clark moved to Duluth to run for congress because she thinks she is more qualified than any of the people who live on the 8th Dist. ”
So, as long as we’re discussing qualifications, where does a predatory pedophile fit into the mix, Kerry? Are they underrepresented at St Paul? Why should we believe the work of someone with your record of deceit(you lied to the cops, to the kid about your age, and to us, your constituents)? How much more dirt can we expect the media to uncover before you resign? We deserve better! If you had even an ounce of honor(something most of us question), you would resign as of July 2012.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 30 4
Gauthier ought to be brought up on ethics violations before the House Ethics Committee and forced to resign if he won’t do so voluntarily. The House code of conduct states in part that a member must exemplify “good citizenship and high personal integrity…treat everyone with respect, fairness, and courtesy…and exercise sound judgment.” Gauthier fails miserably on all counts.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 33 2
And he’d better show up for work in St. Paul on Friday since they’ll be discussing flood relief. Unless he wants to resign immediately, he’s still being paid (by his constituents) to do his job.
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 31 2
So now Gauthier says he wont run after all. He needs time to deal with his issues and I hope he finds the help he needs. I’m sure Gauthier is in a position right now where he is not thinking clearly. Sounds like he has some chemical dependency issues that he is also dealing with. I’m glad he is taking steps tward recovery. What I don’t understand is how Alan Netland and Dan O’Neil could stand behind Gauthier at this point in time and think he was fit for office. Sure….if they were friends and felt the need to support Kerry in some way or help him seek therapy then great. Thats what friends do. Alan Netland and Dan O’Neil are the voice of many of those working men and women of our area. If I was a member of a local union I wouldn’t want those two to speak for me any more. They made a poor choice in that they were going to “enable” Gauthier to continue on in this election. What were they thinking? How could they say with a straight face that Gauthier was the best choice for labor?
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 37 3
Netland told the News Tribune that both he and O’Neil spoke with Gauthier Tuesday night and supported his decision to stay in the race. ‘Dan (O’Neil) and I were on the same page on this.’
Shamelessly supporting a 56 year old deviant who has sex with a teenage boy in a public rest stop shows how morally bankrupt the Labor leadership is and publicly supporting Gauthier on the very day he withdraws from the race evidences real bona fide stupidity.
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