Before he was a star on the rise in the world of Florida politics, State Senator Darren Soto was apparently a member George Washington University Law School’s Law Revue, a “musical and sketch comedy show,” which sounds almost as terrible as the Florida House of Representatives. In 2006, three short years after he authored a Law Revue song in which he lamented, “Back when we were both 1-L’s you were in my section/I spent every day in Con Law hiding my erection,” he was elected to the Florida House of Representatives. The good people of Florida reelected him for several more terms before moving on to the State Senate in 2012 (and for which he was reelected in 2014).
Unless you live in Florida, none of this is your problem, strictly speaking, except that now, Soto is running to replace U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, a longtime congressman who’s currently gunning for Marco Rubio’s Senate seat. But where Grayson maintained a staunchly progressive voting record, Soto leans about as far right as a Democrat can without tumbling into the other side of the aisle. Or as The Sunshine State News, Florida insiders’ conservative outlet of choice, described him, “Soto is about as good as conservatives can hope for from his liberal Democratic district.”
Soto boasts an A-rating from the NRA, has voted in favor of pro-life terminology, is a big supporter of Jeb Bush’s terrible school voucher program, and is beloved by big business interest groups everywhere. All of which helps explain the young politician’s friendly relationship with soon-to-be ex-Senator Marco Rubio. So friendly, in fact, that Rubio even played a bizarre joke on the then-Florida congressman in 2008, in which he hired an actress to send a note to Soto on the House floor and claim to be a secret admirer. When Soto got up to approach his new love interest, according to The Orlando Weekly, Rubio “crashed his gavel down on the podium and announced to all in earshot that a member of the House was seriously out of order. The sergeant-at-arms was sent to retrieve Soto, handcuffing him in the process.”
Soto protested, saying the woman was simply a concerned voter, at which point Rubio revealed that per the Orlando Weekly, “Soto was the victim of both a prank and his notorious libido. Rubio announced the prank, calling poor Soto to the ‘well’” at the main podium to the laughs and applause of his peers.”
That “notorious libido” has been with him since his time as a law student, when he was on the Law Revue. Accompanying the Revue’s performances, at least in Soto’s day, was a short-lived Law Revue Review newsletter, which you can still access on the school’s website. The newsletter is an objectively terrible attempt a law school-oriented Onion ripoff (the site even inexplicably lists The Onion in its sidebar of links), but it’s nothing special; the field of cringeworthy university satire sites is a crowded one. What’s more interesting is the parody lyrics attributed to Darren Soto.
Soto’s attempts at inserting legal jargon puns are bad (writing the line “I want to show you the wonder of my penal code” should be a criminal offense). The jokes about having sex with a heavily intoxicated woman and thanking her for not “filing a grievance for sexual duress” are much worse.
Darren Michael Soto - Undergraduate: Rutgers School of Goombas and Wiseguys - Place of Origin: Doity Joise - Prior Occupation: Asexual Polygamist - Current Occupation: Wielder of the Shaft - Course of Study: Sex Law - Goal: To become a back-up dancer for Christina Aguilera or die trying - Hobbies: Jealousy, Boredom and Self-Gratification - Favorite Quote: “This junk in my trunk ain’t made for chumps” - Favorite Book: “The BFG” - Favorite Color: Green
The Law Revue Review apparently did have some idea that what they were writing wasn’t likely to be roundly praised. In a section labeled “Our Philosophy,” the then-editor-in-chief Patrick Malone writes that his goals include, among other things:
- “That retards stop eating my lunch out of the fridge. I fucking hate it when they do that.”
- “That we find a shaved-headed black man to play Paul Butler.”
- “That we offend at least one other student group a month.”
- “That we become the subject of a First Amendment case.”
Which is maybe (maybe) excusable for a bunch of idiot kids. But Soto was 26 when he graduated from GW. And judging from his antics in the Florida House, not much has changed. This wasn’t that long ago, after all.
Soto’s office did not return Gawker’s requests for comment.
Update 3:40 p.m.
The current incarnation of the GW Law Revue has provided Gawker with the following statement:
Our organization doesn’t currently publish “The Law Revue Review” or any printed materials like it, and as far as I know the two issues available on that website are the only two in existence. None of the people affiliated with the 2003 Law Revue are involved with today’s GW Law Revue, and the organization now focuses on putting on a variety show meant to poke fun at the law school experience (and not demean women or encourage nonconsensual sexual acts).