“Don’t say gay” bill author indicted for PPP fraud

Florida state Rep. Joseph Harding (photo, left), 35, of Ocala, “was indicted on six counts of wire fraud, money laundering, making false statements and other crimes,” for fraudulently obtaining $45,000 of Covid-19 relief funds, NBC News reported on Wednesday, December 7, 2022 (read story here).

The indictment alleges that Harding applied for Small Business Administration for companies with “half a dozen employees and gross revenues from the previous year totaling more than $800,000” which in fact were dormant and had no employees, NBC News said.

Wikipedia says (here) that, “In 2021, Harding introduced a controversial bill, known informally as the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill, which would prohibit teachers from discussing LGBT related topics in grade school classrooms. In 2022, Harding amended the bill to include a provision forcing public schools to out gay children to their parents once the schools learn that the child is not heterosexual.”

Harding, a college dropout who owned a lawn care business, is presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law, so right now he’s just a sleazy bigot. If he’s convicted of the federal charges, he’ll also officially be a scumbag thief.

Update (12/8/22): Rep. Harding, calling the criminal charges against him “distractions,” resigned from the Florida legislature on December 8, 2022 (read story here).

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