A lawmaker in the lower house of the Argentine Congress had to resign after being seen kissing his girlfriend’s bare breasts during an online congressional debate.
The scandalous moment during a pension fund investment debate was broadcast live on the House of Commons YouTube channel and on a giant screen set up for online debate in Congress during the pandemic.
While some Argentine lawmakers attend meetings in person, many log in from home.
Juan Emilio Ameri claimed he was offline during the incident but resigned Thursday after being asked to order by the President of the House of Commons, Sergio Massa.
“I have a terrible one [internet] Connection at home, ”Ameri later said in a radio interview.
Ameri said his girlfriend, who recently had breast augmentation surgery, happened upon the room while he thought he was offline and he called her.
Despite his claims that he was offline, footage that went viral immediately shows lawmakers looking straight into his computer’s camera before pulling down his partner’s blouse, all in full view of the other members of Congress and online viewers.
The legislature of President Alberto Fernández’s Peronist Party initially pleaded for suspension from his seat, but eventually gave in to demands for his resignation.
“We cannot allow irresponsibility of this magnitude, so we will guarantee that all rules are applied so that he is appropriately sanctioned according to the severity of his actions,” said a statement from the government bloc in the House of Commons shortly before Ameri’s resignation.
A member of the ruling Peronist Party, Buenos Aires City Council legislator María Rachid, defended Ameri in a tweet on Thursday, saying his behavior was no worse than that of lawmakers playing Candy Crush on their phones during the session.