Claims to fame: Republican candidate for Nevada state assembly, 2002; child molester; incest perp
Moral apex: Convicted in California in 1988 for lewd and lascivious behavior with a child under the age of 14 — a felony sex crime.
What’s worse: The victim was his own 12-year-old daughter.
What’s worse: Investigation led to exposure of two additional sex-crime convictions, one involving the same daughter, and one involving another daughter under age 14.
Twinkie defense: Admitted he “had a problem,” and was quick to note he turned himself in (but only after his bishop told him to), and “was never arrested.”
Free pass: Released on own recognizance, given parole, never served jail time.
Divine consequence: Felony conviction rendered him ineligible not only to vote, but ineligible to run for office.
What happened next: Gardner’s exposure came too late to get his name off the ballot — but he lost anyway (to Democratic incumbent Ellen Koivisto).
Fun fact #1: In Nevada, filing to run for office when you’re ineligible to run is a felony in itself, and an ineligible filer’s signed declaration of eligibility translates to perjury.
Fun fact #2: Gardner’s e-mail address is (or was then) firstname.lastname@example.org.
Suggested Bible reading for Mr. Gardner:
— John 11:35