Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Alex Sink chats with Bubba the Love Sponge about rent-boy scandal

Maybe it takes a shock jock like Bubba the Love Sponge Clem to get Alex Sink to relax.

Typically hypercautious, the prim Democratic candidate for governor joined the infamous Tampa radio host Wednesday for a live chat.

After a few minutes of government-speak about the oil spill, she was led by her host to comment upon something no less grimy but a lot more salacious: the gay escort "rentboy" scandal that has been dogging her Republican rival, Attorney General Bill McCollum.

Sink was on it like spray tan on a prom date.

She accused McCollum of failing to take responsibility for the state spending more than $120,000 to hire George A. Rekers, a psychologist and minister, as an expert witness in a gay adoption case after his testimony had been previously deemed not credible in court.

Earlier this month, the alternative newspaper Miami New Times reported that Rekers, who has crusaded against homosexuality, traveled to Europe in April with a male prostitute whom he apparently met through the website Rekers said they had "not engaged in any homosexual behavior whatsoever," although the escort recalled giving Rekers nude massages.

"When Attorney General McCollum was asked why he would hire a man like this — who previous courts had said that his testimony had no legitimacy — his response was, 'Well it wasn't me who hired him. It was the Department of Children and Families, they hired the expert witnesses,' " Sink said, noting that it subsequently came out that McCollum had personally pushed to bring in Rekers.

"That sounds to me like a typical politician. He's faced with something, they try to sweep it under the carpet or lay the blame on somebody else, when all along he was the one who agreed to hire this Rekers, whose testimony in previous cases had already been judged to be not relevant and not accurate," said Sink, in her most extensive comments on the controversy to date.

"We don't need people in public service like that."

She drew a fawning reaction from Clem, the sometimes raunchy radio host, whose show recently featured a Tampa porn actor and alleged former mistress of Tiger Woods.

Referring to Sink's current role as state chief financial officer, Clem said: "Ms. Sink, isn't that what you're all about, is being fiscally responsible? That's what you've done is cut corners and pinched pennies and been more financially and fiscally responsible."

McCollum's campaign spokeswoman Kristy Campbell dismissed Sink's attacks.

"Alex Sink continues to overreach in her desperate attacks against Attorney General McCollum. Attorney General McCollum has been clear regarding the issues surrounding this case," she said. "Under the leadership of Alex Sink, the Department of Financial Services has specialized in public relations stunts and questionable and wasteful spending."

Adam C. Smith can be reached at

Alex Sink chats with Bubba the Love Sponge about rent-boy scandal 05/19/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 19, 2010 10:58pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. From the food editor: Almond-Crusted Chicken Tenders


    I decided my almond chicken obsession was becoming a bit much.

    Almond Crusted Chicken Tenders. Photo by Michelle Stark, Times food editor.
  2. Forecast: Soggy, yet hot, workweek ahead across Tampa Bay


    A soggy workweek is ahead across Tampa Bay as decent chances for scattered storms remain consistent over the next several days.

    Tampa Bay's 7 day forecast. [WTSP]
  3. Travel ban, Kennedy retirement speculation the focus as Supreme Court prepares for break


    WASHINGTON — Before taking their long summer break, the Supreme Court justices are poised to act on the Trump administration's travel ban and a separation of church and state dispute involving a Missouri church playground.

    Justice Anthony Kennedy, shown in 2007, has given no public sign that he would step down this year and give President Donald Trump his second high court pick in the first months of his administration. Kennedy's departure would allow conservatives to take firm control of the court. [Associated Press]
  4. Florida education news: Guns, charter schools, drug education and more


    HOSTILE WORK PLACE: A legal review determines that while a University of South Florida technology center former director might have been boorish and hostile, …

  5. Fire crews battle blaze at apartment complex near Seminole Heights


    Fire crews are battling a blaze that broke out early Monday morning at an apartment complex near Seminole Heights, according to Tampa Fire Rescue.