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Tennessee Republicans Need to Boot Their House Speaker

The Tennessee Speaker of the House knowingly retained a chief of staff who behaved in all sorts of sexual shenanigans and egged it all on. Text messages between the two reveal that Speaker Glen Casada knew his Chief of Staff was engaging in seriously bad behavior even before Casada became Speaker and hired Cade Cothren as his chief of staff.

For example, Cothren solicited interns for oral sex and bragged to Casada about having sex in a bathroom. Casada cheered him on over the latter. The Speaker’s chief of staff also admitted to cocaine use in the legislative building.

Through all of this, Casada defended his chief of staff and said he’d stand by the guy and keep him on the payroll.

Now, text messages between the two reveal that Casada knew all about what Cothren was doing, even before Cothren became his chief of staff.

A new text message exchange obtained by NewsChannel 5 Investigates shows House Speaker Glen Casada joking with an aide about whether two young women were of legal age for sexual relations.

That exchange occurred on August 21, 2016, when Cade Cothren, then the press secretary for the Tennessee House Republican Caucus, sent Casada a video of two young women dancing in his apartment. At the time, Casada was the caucus chairman.

“R they 21?” Casada asked.

“It only takes 18,” the aide responded, adding a smile emoji.

Casada’s answer: “Lol!!! And true!”

The Tennessee Republicans need to clean up their House and should do so right at the top.

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