A Georgia state representative held a press conference Friday to come out while attempting to stop rumors that he had traded state funds and lobbyist gifts for sexual favors from men.
Rep. Rashad Taylor, a Democrat from southwest Atlanta, said he did not want to come out amid such scandalous allegations, but he felt "lucky for all the support from those who are closest to me," according to WSBTV News.
Taylor was the target of rumors being spread by Jermaine Callahan, who contacted several lawmakers to tell them that their colleague was accepting sexual favors in exchange for state funds. Taylor told reporters that Callahan was actually the former partner of the man Taylor is now dating.
Callahan eventually admitted that he had no evidence, and all of his allegations were hearsay.
"The gentleman who wrote the e-mail was the former partner of the person I'm now seeing," Taylor said at the press conference, held at the office of Georgia Equality. "He hoped he would humiliate and embarrass me by sending this e-mail."
He added, "I find it absolutely reprehensible and disgusting that another member of this community would use these types of tactics of fear and intimidation and would embrace this backward and frankly hurtful attitude that to be gay is to have a horrible secret."
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