Ohio politician criticized for Facebook post ′trivializing′ sexual assault | News | DW | 17.11.2017

United States

Ohio politician criticized for Facebook post 'trivializing' sexual assault

An Ohio Supreme Court judge has been slammed for detailing his sexual past on social media. William O'Neill said he was trying to de-legitimize the "media frenzy" around sexual assault.

A man touching a woman's thigh (picture-alliance/reality/F. May)

An Ohio Supreme Court Justice and candidate for governor landed in hot water on Friday for "joking and trivializing sexual assault" in a Facebook post.

Democrat William O'Neill said he was trying to dampen the "media frenzy" over sexual assault in his post, so that politicians could get back to "legalizing marijuana and opening the state hospital network to the combat the opioid crisis."

To that end, Bill O'Neill told the world that he had been "sexually intimate with approximately 50 very attractive females," including one "gorgeous blonde" with whom he had "made passionate love" in a hayloft.

Facebook Screenshot of O'Neill's post

O'Neill's Facebook post

O'Neill's post was immediately met with outrage from both sides of the political spectrum in Ohio, with most calling for him to withdraw from the governor's race immediately.

Republican Lieutenant Governor Mary Taylor said it was a "crass post is ill-timed and dismissive at best."

Former Congresswomen Betty Sutton, a Democrat who is also running for governor in next year's elections and polling ahead of O'Neill, accused the state Supreme Court judge of brushing off the issue of assault.

Only a few hours after the post, O'Neill's campaign spokesman said he had resigned over his boss's comments.

O'Neill wrote that his statement was a direct reaction to the outcry over recently published pictures of Minnesota Senator Al Franken groping a radio host while she slept.

es/jm (AP)

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