Another Democratic member of Congress just admitted to having an extramarital affair. Representative Steven Horsford of Nevada’s 4th District adds his name to the long list of Congressmen and women who have stepped out on their marriage and betrayed the trust of the people who put him in office.
The Nevada lawmaker admitted on Friday that he and former intern Gabriela Linder had carried on an affair “over the course of several years,” according to the New York Post. He wrote in a statement to the press, “I am deeply sorry to all those who have been impacted by this very poor decision, most importantly my wife and family. Out of concern for my family during this challenging time, I ask that our privacy is respected.”
News of the affair broke in April when Linder, known as “Love Jones” on her podcast “Mistress for Congress,” began discussing the relationship.
According to both parties, the two met in 2009 and began seeing each other on a regular basis. At the time, Horsford was the Nevada state Senate Majority leader and the first African American to have the title.
Linder was an intern, but not for Horsford or anyone in his office. Instead, she worked for Senator Harry Reid. She was a 21-year-old senior at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He was 36.
The two remained as sexual partners until 2019 when Horsford finally told Linder that he couldn’t leave his wife for her, especially not with an election coming up. After all, he had to play the part of a family and god-fearing man.
Linder told the Review-Journal, “I decided I can’t wait, deserved more, and didn’t want to be that person anymore. And I realized someone who could lie that way is not someone who would be honorable to me.”
However, unlike many of his colleagues, Horsford’s extramarital relationship doesn’t seem to have broken any laws or code of ethics, at least according to what we know at this time.
Unlike Katie Hill and the alleged Ilhan Omar, Horsford wasn’t paying Linder for her silence, nor did his office receive any benefits of their relationship. She didn’t work for him at any point in her career.
As one of his aides says, “This was a private relationship of the congressman’s, and this was in no way related to his public office.” The aid continued saying that Linder “never received compensation from the congressman or from the campaign over the course of their private relationship.”
However, that may not be entirely true.
Linder says that while Horsford never paid her for anything, he “looked out for me for years, from anything from a job recommendation to financial support.” On occasion, Linder says that he introduced her to a few other politicians and those in positions of influence in the hopes of helping her out. However, whether she took that help, financial support, or otherwise, is unclear.
What is clear is that a man trusted to lead his constituents, to represent them, and do what is best for them on a national level was just found in a ten-year-long lie.
Not exactly a good look, huh?
He may not be forced to resign as Hill was last year, but his career may still suffer. After all, the man who had Horsford’s seat before him decided to retire early and after only one term because of a similar sex scandal of his own. So that doesn’t bode well for the Nevada lawmaker.
However, the seat is prone to flipping anyway.
In fact, this isn’t the first time Horsford has held this seat. He first won it in 2012. But he lost it after only one term to a Republican challenger. The next term ousted that Republican, again after only one term, and put in a Democrat, Ruben Kihuen. It was Kihuen, who vacated his seat, allowing Horsford to retake it in 2018.
According to Linder, Horsford shouldn’t seek re-election. She said, “If this was a story in 2018, he wouldn’t have run.” And she adds, “He obtained this position under false pretenses that he was a family man and man of God. He should take a step back, atone, and if people are satisfied, then he can come back into politics.”
While Linder may have made an extremely “poor decision” some ten or so years ago, she sure seems to have a good point on Horsford’s political career.