Former Trump campaign chair to plead guilty on child sex trafficking charges

Former Trump campaign chair to plead guilty on child sex trafficking charges
FILE - This March 16, 2017, file photo, provided by the Cleveland County Sheriff's Office in Norman, Okla., shows Ralph Shortey, a Republican state senator who is facing felony child prostitution charges after police say he solicited sex from a 17-year-old boy. Photo: (Cleveland County Sheriff's Office via AP, File)

Ralph Shortey, a former Oklahoma state senator and Trump campaign chair in the state, will plead guilty to charges of child sex trafficking.

Shortey, who remains married to the woman with whom he has four daughters, was found in a hotel room with a 17-year old, whom he had offered money for “sexual stuff” when he expressed a need for money for spring break.

In exchange for pleading guilty on the prostitution charges, U.S. prosecutors have reportedly agreed to drop three child pornography counts against him. He is expected to plead guilty on November 30. A district judge will decide his punishment in a sentencing set for next year.

He faces at least ten years in prison, the mandatory minimum for the charges. The maximum is life in prison.

“Mr. Shortey feels this is a necessary step in putting this painful and humiliating ordeal behind him, for both himself, his family and for the state of Oklahoma, his attorney, Ed Blau, said.

Shortey made headlines for introducing a bill to ban the human consumption of aborted fetuses, despite no evidence that this has been happening. He was also a strong proponent of gun rights, and voted against LGBTQ rights, including voting for a measure passed this year allowing businesses to discriminate.

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