Republican Aide Fired After Suggesting Cory Booker Is Gay

A top aide to Republican senate candidate Steve Lonegan has been fired after making comments about Lonegan's rival in the race, Cory Booker.

On Thursday, Talking Points Memo published a bizarre interview they conducted with the aide, Rick Shaftan, in which he makes several crass and homophobic remarks.

ShaftanIn a profanity-filled assessment of the race delivered via phone Thursday, Rick Shaftan, a senior staffer and key strategist on Lonegan's campaign, suggested voters would be turned off by Booker's "odd" behavior including Twitter messages the Democrat sent to a stripper, that Shaftan described as "strange" and "like what a gay guy would say."

"It was just weird. I mean, to me, you know, hey, if he said, 'Hey, you got really hot breasts man, I'd love to suck on them.' Then like, yeah, cool. But like, he didn't say that," Shaftan explained. "It was like kind of like, I don't know, it was like what a gay guy would say to a stripper. It's the way he was talking to her. It's just like like there was no sexual interest at all. I don't know. To me, if I was single and you know like some stripper was tweeting me, I might take advantage of the perks of the office, you know?"

Shaftan was informed of his termination later that day.

According to The Star-Ledger, Lonegan issued the following statement about his now former employee soon after: “His comments are distasteful and offensive, and his contract as a vendor for my campaign will be terminated immediately.”

Shaftan has since posted a non-apology on his Facebook page.

I apologize to Steve Lonegan and his supporters if any statements I have made have hurt his candidacy and do not want these comments or my presence in this campaign to serve as a distraction to his efforts to win this election and save our nation from the radical left-wing policies of Barack Obama and Cory Booker.

All this takes place just ahead of the special election this Tuesday.


  1. Bernie says

    what is really funny and weird about this is that even though Mr. Shaftan wrote a demeaning and disgusting article, I have seen Mr. Lonegan on TV and there is something wrong with him……I am not sure what it is….he has an odd and peculiar affect along with weird facial expressions……or maybe he is cross eyed……

  2. Bill says

    @Joesph Foster: the “if” was OK in this case because he was not apologizing to the person he badmouthed, but rather to his former employer. It isn’t clear if Shaftan’s statements hurt Lonegan’s campaign given how rapidly Shaftan was removed, which justifies the use of the word “if”.

    What Shaftan has yet to do is to apologize to both Brooker and the alleged stripper.

  3. Michael says

    After reading the comment, the more offensive part of it is him saying he’d take advantage of his position and hook up with the stripper.

    You know, let’s try to slam gay people and in the same breathe, not realizing, we’re letting everyone know just how sleezy we are in our personal life.

  4. Bart says

    Hilariously douchebaggery. This guy is such an assclown his head hasn’t been out of his ass for at least 30 years. “Perks of the office,” really?! Good God, I’m glad these fossils are dying off.

  5. Pete N SFO says

    Am I the only one that is amazed that someone that close to a candidate could really be that dumb? If I didn’t trust these sources, I would swear I was being punked!

    I suppose it can only be accounted for as the fringe supporting the fringe… but even that???

    Meanwhile… if Cory were gay. :)

  6. Icebloo says

    BCory Booker is ahead in the polls with just a few days left. I don’t think this homophobic guy acted alone. It is a typical Republican tactic to smear someone as gay – especial when a Republican is desperate. I think Lonegan’s campaign asked this guy to do this on purpose. Now the seed of doubt is once again implanted in voter’s heads about Cory and the man who said it was a non-vital member of the Lonegan who can take the blame & then disappear.

    Republicans ALWAYS play dirty.

  7. jpeckjr says

    I raised my eyebrows on two aspects. First, suggesting Mr. Booker should have used the “perks of the office” to have sex with the stripper, thus creating a actual “scandal” to be used against him. Not that it is a scandal for a single man to have sex if he wants to.

    Second, how, like, you know, thoroughly, I don’t know, maybe, inarticulate, he, I mean Mr. Shaftan, is, and, maybe, like, unable to say, if you get what I’m thinking, a coherent, you know. Sentence. That was enough to fire him.

  8. emjayay says

    Lonegan is a small time small town politician who somehow got to the big time. Kind of like that Republican candidate for governor in New York the last time, except that was at least Buffalo. Although that guy was just as bad.

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