Video: The obligatory “Florida state senator caught looking at porn on senate floor” clip

posted at 8:45 pm on May 3, 2010 by Allahpundit

A palate cleanser via Taegan Goddard. I’m tempted to play “name that party!” with this one, but my scruples won’t let me. Alas, my friends, he’s one of ours.

Maybe he’s a libertarian?

Bennett defended his actions, telling Sunshine State News it was an email sent to him by a woman “who happens to be a former court administrator.”

“I was just sitting there, bored as they were debating the abortion bill,” Bennett said.

“I opened it up and said holy [expletive]! What’s on my screen? and clicked away from it right away.”

Sunshine State News could not verify how long the image of four bikini-clad women with their tops exposed was open before our cameras started rolling on it, but it was up for at least three seconds before it disappeared from the screen…

We offered Bennett an opportunity to prove his statements to Sunshine State News by showing the executive editor and videographer the email record with a government-related subject line, but after talking to the Senate’s top lawyer, he declined to let us see those records.

A few things. One: This is a useful reminder to be careful about opening e-mail attachments at work. Two: I don’t know what’s up with the dog video and, under the circumstances, I don’t want to know. Three: I suspect he’s telling the truth for the simple reason that no one would make up the fact that they got a photo like this from a woman friend. Right? If you’re going to try the “oh, my buddy sent this to me as a joke” excuse, you wouldn’t make the buddy female unless she really was female and really had sent it to you. I think we’re looking at an acquittal here. Justice for Bennett!

Also, let’s face it: It could have been worse. Imagine if he’d gotten caught looking at this.

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What wrong with looking at boobs? I’d do it more if I could get away with it.

Tim Burton on May 3, 2010 at 10:44 PM

I would too. And I can’t get away with it. I’d get fired if I had something like this up on my work computer. You know? Like this guy had up on his work computer.

Why can’t you get away with it? Would someone get oh, so offended? Is it mentioned in an employee handbook that you had to sign as a condition of employment not to watch boobies?

This guy definitely didn’t have an employee handbook. And he got caught.

But he’s royalty so laws that apply to the little people don’t apply to him.

BowHuntingTexas on May 3, 2010 at 10:53 PM

I’ve seen porn and this isn’t it. And why did they black out their tops? I can see the bikini top on at least a few of the women.

ButterflyDragon

Because if they didn’t black it out, everyone could clearly see there was no nudity involved, which would conflict with the story they wanted to push.

xblade on May 3, 2010 at 10:58 PM

One of ours? I don’t claim this POS! These people are part of the problem. This is why I left the Republian party

flameofjudah on May 3, 2010 at 10:08 PM

We don’t need idiots like you. Did you not read the article or watch the video. The Senator did not know that the pic was to pop up. Screw ya.

CWforFreedom on May 3, 2010 at 11:12 PM

For the idiots – the Senator said:

“I opened it up and said holy [expletive]! What’s on my screen? and clicked away from it right away.”

CWforFreedom on May 3, 2010 at 11:14 PM

Bill Clinton: C’mon Allah, throw us bone and get rid of the blackline.

tommer74 on May 3, 2010 at 11:14 PM

This is absolutely inappropriate! I am sad that I need to remind people today that Sexual objectification refers to the practice of regarding or treating another person merely as an instrument (object) towards the person’s sexual pleasure.
It is an inappropriate use of time for an employee of the people.

It is inappropriate for him to be doing this while someone is standing and addressing issues as important as abortion.

Finally, why aren’t their (govt.) firewalls, and email filters removing this type of content from their systems? The billions of dollars that is wasted on (spam, and internet browsing) this crap in government and corporate offices alike is an abuse of technology and tax payer resources.

This is offensive on many levels!

CAMarschke on May 3, 2010 at 11:17 PM

Hey! Leave my senator alone!

ornery_independent on May 4, 2010 at 12:11 AM

I would too. And I can’t get away with it. I’d get fired if I had something like this up on my work computer. You know? Like this guy had up on his work computer.
.. snip

But he’s royalty so laws that apply to the little people don’t apply to him.

BowHuntingTexas on May 3, 2010 at 10:53 PM

OK, in fairness here, it’s not because of some law that you can’t do the same at your work without being fired (you can argue that some laws like anti-harassment and other liberally interpreted laws enable such policies), it is company policies that make this the case. So in this instance, you can’t say he doesn’t have to follow a law while you do.

Gotta believe that this story is at least close to what he said. Can’t imagine someone who knows cameras are rolling doing something that stupid on purpose.

AZfederalist on May 4, 2010 at 12:23 AM

“Maybe he’s a libertarian?”

“Libertarian” or “Libertine”? Slight difference…

geotopia on May 4, 2010 at 12:49 AM

At least when he gets accused of groping male staffers and/or pages he’ll have the perfect evidence to show he doesn’t swing that way.

Dr. ZhivBlago on May 4, 2010 at 2:16 AM

I would too. And I can’t get away with it. I’d get fired if I had something like this up on my work computer. You know? Like this guy had up on his work computer.
BowHuntingTexas on May 3, 2010 at 10:53 PM

Really? You get an e-mail from someone you’re supposed to get e-mails from (in his case a constituent), that has pictures in it that aren’t safe for work.

You don’t get a chance to say “what was that” or “maybe so-and-so’s e-mail got spoofed” or “don’t open e-mails from Uncle Ted at work anymore” or anything… you just get fired?

If I’m online surfing porn websites at work, yeah I get fired. But opening an e-mail that unknown to me has a risque picture in it? Somehow I doubt that’s generally a firing on the first offense at most offices.

gekkobear on May 4, 2010 at 2:19 AM

This is offensive on many levels!

CAMarschke on May 3, 2010 at 11:17 PM

Seriously? Hot chicks(assuming they are) in bathing suits offend you? Uh, why?

di butler on May 4, 2010 at 2:40 AM

That doesn’t look like it even qualifies as porn. You see that on European public beaches in the summer. We’re still awfully Victorian despite the constant barrage of sexuality.

deewhybee on May 4, 2010 at 2:54 AM

Heh, the orator in the background is talking about how he’s against a bill because it “disrespects too many women in the state of Florida.”

But in all seriousness, this is some seriously crappy reporting by Sunshine State News. The video is edited so that you can’t see anything before the image pops up. It implies that he’s been looking at the image for a longer period of time. For all we know, he could have just been flipping through his e-mail, and that’s the one that came up, and he did indeed click away within a few seconds.

At worst, he’s guilty of being bored during a governmental session. That’s not a crime, it’s an affirmation of his humanity.

Mark Jaquith on May 4, 2010 at 5:35 AM

Hey, if he looked up from the computer he would see a bunch of boobs as well!

Stsomewhere on May 4, 2010 at 6:51 AM

You can buy greeting cards at Spencer’s with more porn than that!

ladyingray on May 4, 2010 at 7:51 AM

Listening to boobs argue, or looking at boobs…that was his choice…

right2bright on May 4, 2010 at 8:16 AM

yeah at least he’s hetero. but dang dude. Thats a gov’t computer. Someone monitor his keystrokes. He may be up to something.

johnnyU on May 4, 2010 at 8:31 AM

He’s doing an undercover investigation of the SEC and is only doing some background checking of the sites.

Kissmygrits on May 4, 2010 at 9:17 AM

Sorry, while you can file this under the “shouldn’t be screwing around with funny emails on work time” category…I have a MUCH bigger problem with the whole RNC bondage party than looking at *gasp* an email with boobies.

But that’s just me.

search4truth on May 4, 2010 at 9:30 AM

Re “three seconds”… It appears that his laptop has a trackpad. It’s very easy to imagine it taking that long to move the cursor to the [X] button, for someone unfamiliar with the Alt-F4 Close Application or Ctrl-F4 Close Window key bindings.

Anyone who wants to beat the guy up over this, just think how easy it would be to have someone send you an email with such a picture in it. You absolutely do not know what’s in a picture before you open it (the name of the file may be completely innocuous).

The Monster on May 4, 2010 at 10:11 AM

You call THAT porn?

You folks need to get out more.

mojo on May 4, 2010 at 10:12 AM

You call THAT porn?

You folks need to get out more.

mojo on May 4, 2010 at 10:12 AM

Amen. You should see some of the stuff I get emailed! I am so offended, I stare at it for at least 15 seconds before deleting it, so I will know what porn is next time.

But, to the point. No one can stop stuff being emailed to them. It would be interesting to send these reporters, their news directors, station managers etc. a porn message with a read receipt. To date, I don’t know how to know something is bad BEFORE I know what it is.

barnone on May 4, 2010 at 10:30 AM

Yeah, I gotta say, maybe I’m desensitized, but a photo of topless women isn’t really porn. These things are subjective of course, but above-the-waist pictures just aren’t hot enough to be called porn. Britain’s had Page 3 girls for decades now. They’re just boobs, people.

Enrique on May 4, 2010 at 10:47 AM

I don’t care about the boobies. Really. If this was the worst thing our congresscritters did we’d be in much better shape as a nation.

I can’t even fault the guy for goofing off on the Senate floor … so much of what goes on in that place is theater anyway.

TheUnrepentantGeek on May 4, 2010 at 11:33 AM

I’m with the commenters that say it looks like they’re wearing bikini tops. I don’t know. I wouldn’t call this porn.

Sultry Beauty on May 4, 2010 at 12:42 PM

Viewed the link to the Christ painting. Not realistic, artist did not use enough orange.

ZeeMI on May 4, 2010 at 3:11 PM

The redhead’s name is Ariel. ;)

agmartin on May 4, 2010 at 5:31 PM

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