Update, 3:41 a.m.: The Connecticut state legislator who made the allegedly lewd remark will lose his leadership post, according to NBC News. He has denied that he meant to suggest anything sexually inappropriate.
“It came out the wrong way. … It had nothing to do with sex, in my mind, but I can understand how people would think that by hearing it,” he told a local paper.
The legislator, Ernest Hewett, was appointed deputy speaker in January. In that capacity, he would have presided over the state House when the speaker was not in the chamber.
House Speaker Brendan Sharkey announced he had stripped Hewett of the deputy speaker title on Thursday.
Read the original story below:
This one will go down in the chronicles of inappropriate remarks from a public official.
According to the New London New Day, a 17-year-old girl was testifying before a Connecticut state legislature committee about her role with a nature center, and how she used the experience to overcome shyness in teaching young children about wildlife, when Democratic Connecticut state Rep. Ernest Hewett made a lewd comment about his own reptile.
“I am usually a very shy person, and now I am more outgoing,” the girl told the committee, according to the New Day. “I was able to teach those children about certain things like snakes that we have and the turtles that we have. … I want to do something toward that, working with children when I get older.”
“If you’re bashful, I got a snake sitting under my desk here,” Hewett said.
The New Day also reported Connecticut Republican Party chairman Jerry Labriola Jr. called on Hewett to resign. However, House speaker Brendan Sharkey only gave him “a slap on the wrist,” according to Labriola in the story.