Exclusive: Gaetz Asks Austin and Milley Why Drag Queen Shows are Still Happening on Military Bases

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) is demanding to know from Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark Milley why drag queen shows and story hours are still happening on military bases — something they both testified they do not support.

Gaetz wrote in a letter to Austin and Milley regarding an upcoming “family friendly” drag queen event at Nellis Air Force Base scheduled for June 1, “In this latest outright attack on children, this event is being advertised as having no minimum age requirement.”

He added: “You both testified before the House Armed Service Committee stating: ‘drag shows and drag events are not something the DoD supports or fund’ and ‘I’d like to take a look at that material … I don’t agree with that, these things shouldn’t be happening.’ Given those statements, has this drag event scheduled for June 1, 2023, on Nellis Air Force Base been reviewed and approved by either of you?” he asked.

He also asked whether the base will provide funding for logistical support of the event, if the DoD feels it is appropriate for children to attend a sexualized drag performance, why base commanders defying your intent and direction by facilitating drag events, and if the event goes forward, why they allowed the event to take place.

Gaetz during the March hearing forced both Austin and Milley to say whether they supported these events. Under questioning, both claimed ignorance at first and ultimately said they do not support the events.

After the hearing, Gaetz handed a folder to Milley filled with evidence of the shows.

In his letter, Gaetz listed five specific drag queen events on military bases, along with questions about each event.

The events included a May 27, 2022, drag queen story hour that was canceled after media attention, a June 17, 2022, drag queen show at Nellis Air Force Base, a June 30, 2022, drag queen story hour and “trivia” at the Malmstrom Air Force Base, a July 30, 2022, “Diversity, Equity, Inclusion Summer Festival” where Navy influencer “Harpy Daniels” performed, and the upcoming drag June 1, 2023, event at Nellis Air Force Base.

Gaetz also demanded to know more about the Navy’s drag queen ambassador, Yeoman 2nd Class Joshua Kelley, who identifies as “Harpy Daniels” and whether any taxpayer funds went to supporting the Navy’s ambassadorship program.

“Please provide answers to all questions posed in this letter and clarification on whether any punitive action has or will be taken against individuals who facilitated drag events with taxpayer dollars by June 12, 2023. I appreciate your attention and await your reply,” Gaetz wrote.

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