Johnson has spent much of the last year in Christchurch, where he moved without his wife and her three kids (from a previous marriage), in order to help the country's recovery from the February earthquake.
All the while Johnson was reportedly trolling the internet under the username "chchbill" for women who needed help getting pregnant. He reportedly had exchanges with at least nine women - among them several lesbians - at least three of whom are now pregnant.
From the Herald:
The Herald on Sunday approached Johnson on Thursday at a restaurant in Christchurch where he had just finished dining with one of the women he had successfully impregnated.
He said the urge to become a biological father was "a need that I have".
"I am married to the most beautiful woman in the world. When I married her I knew we couldn't have any more children. She had a hysterectomy 10 years ago," he said. "There is nothing my wife would want to give me more in the world than a child of my own."
"Reproduction and having children is as basic a human need as eating," he told the Herald.
His wife, Kathy Johnson, said the revelations were "the utmost of betrayal."
"This is a really, really difficult time for our family," Kathy Johnson said in an email to the Mobile Press-Register. "I'm still in disbelief and very hurt, and our family has a lot of healing to do."
Johnson ran as a Christian conservative in his 2010 bid for governor, during which he said he was against gay marriage. He finished fifth out of seven Republican primary candidates.
Republished with permission from TalkingPointsMemo.com. Authored by Jillian Rayfield. Images via Shutterstock/Billjohnson.org. TPM provides breaking news, investigative reporting and smart analysis of politics.