Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona, a devout Mormon and family man, has apologized for homophobic, racist and anti-Semitic comments posted online by his teenage son.
The high schooler, Tanner, posted the offensive remarks in February and March. In one message he threatened the “f—-t” who stole his motorcycle from a church parking lot and frequently used the N word in a series of Facebook postings.
The Republican lawmaker said he was “very disappointed” in his son’s online behavior.
“This language is unacceptable, anywhere. Needless to say, I’ve already spoken with him about this, he has apologized, and I apologize as well,” the senator said in a statement.
The GOP politician recently brought his son Tanner into the spotlight by publicizing a survival expedition they had embarked on, making public the father-son bonding experience on his Facebook page.
Tanner Flake’s offensive Twitter postings were originally reported by BuzzFeed.
“To the f—-t who stole my dirt bike from the church parking lot, I will find you, and I will beat the crap out of you,” the boy, whose Twitter handle is @tflakey, wrote on March 20.
“I’m down to own some f—-ts,” he wrote in February, in a tweet directed at another Twitter user.
His tweets also included an anti-Semitic message directed at an undisclosed Twitter user.
“Say something hilarious, and I guarantee that … will say it louder and get all the credit. Jew,” he tweeted in February.
In a series of Facebook postings, riddled with “f—-t” and “n—-r,” the boy also bragged about his famous dad.
He boasted that he could talk to his father about a “crappy bill” his Facebook friend was protesting.
BuzzFeed also reported that the teenager used the screen name “n1—rkiller” in Fun Run, a gaming app on which he was active.
The Arizona teen, one of Flake’s brood of five children, has since locked his Twitter account.
Angry constituents soon took to the Senator’s Facebook page to voice their outrage.
“Shame on you! Your son is an embarrassment to this country,” one person wrote, with another adding, “You said your son has a language problem. While his language is deplorable, you son has a bigotry problem.”
Sen. Flake, 55, served in the House from 2001–13. He was elected to the Senate in 2012.
Jeff Flake’s Son Linked To Horrifying Dog Deaths: Report
The son of Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) is involved in the deaths of more than a dozen dogs, Fox 10 News reported Sunday night.
Seventeen dogs being held at Green Acre boarding house in Maricopa County, Arizona, were revealed to be dead Saturday morning while under the care of the senator’s son Austin Flake and his wife, sources told the station. The couple had been tasked with managing the facility while the owners were out of town.
“I learned of this tragic accident yesterday,” Jeff Flake said in a statement. “I can’t imagine the devastating loss these families are experiencing. My heart goes out to the owners who lost their beloved pets.”
The owners allegedly told law enforcement that the facility’s power shut down sometime between Thursday night and Friday morning, according to Fox 10. The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office found evidence suggesting that one of the dogs chewed through a wire powering the air-conditioning in the pets’ living quarters.
“[Owners were] hoping maybe that their dog had run away only to have to identify a dead dog in a pile of corpses of labs and St. Bernards and goldens and Bernese mountain dogs just piled like meat, rotting,” dog owner Valerie Collins told CBS 5.
“So many lies were told, and we just want the truth to come out,” she continued.
The sheriff’s office said the incident is still under investigation.
Last year, Jeff Flake grappled with a scandal involving another son of his, a teenager who posted several homophobic, anti-Semitic and racist comments on his Twitter account, forcing the senator to issue a public apology for his son’s actions.
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