There’s a very important point that the media are either missing or failing to grill him on.
Even if Gaetz is telling the truth (which I don’t believe for one moment)
He says the bribe amount requested was $25M – no matter how rich the target is that’s no ordinary bribe.
Stormy Daniels had potentially a very damaging story on Trump (a supposedly Billionaire running for President) and how much did it cost to pay her off?
$25M is 10-30x more than the going payoff for a married politician to pay off a mistress to get an abortion. I.e. something politically damaging but not outright criminal.
The $25M quantum of the bribe that Gaetz himself claims was demanded is only explainable if the crime was something extremely serious that would unequivocally result in a very long jail term and end his career. Something as serious as covering up a murder, and even then it’s a very high amount.
Even the amount he claimed was the prepayment is too high.
Furthermore it doesn’t make sense if he was not actually guilty of such a crime, as if it’s not a cut and dry case then you would put that sort of money into a legal defense and bribe prosecution, judges and corroborating witnesses etc not to dismiss but to make procedural “errors” or judgement that would enable the case to be dismissed. Paying someone that sort of money for a non-guaranteed result is too stupid even for Gaetz.
If it’s just one 17yo then any reasonable lawyer would have all sorts of legitimate strategies to get the case dismissed or pleaded to a lesser sentence, let alone what sort of defense you’d get for 1/10th of the bribe amount.
For Gaetz to cook up such a ridiculous cover story with that amount of bribe essentially confirms that he did do something very very bad.
I would go so far as to say what he did may be way worse than we are speculating. I don’t think merely sex trafficking and statutory rape of a 17yo justifies that degree of coverup so I’d wager good odds we are yet to see the full extent of it.