Former U.S. President Bill Clinton (L) arrives at a Democratic Caucus meeting with Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN). (Photo : Reuters)
Not every scandal out of Washington ends in disaster. While many media outlets wildly speculated about the odd tweeting between Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.) and a 24-year-old aspiring swimsuit model during Tuesday night's State of the Union address, it was apparently all over nothing. The mystery woman wasn't romantically involved with the congressman; she's actually Cohen's "secret daughter."
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When reporters noticed Rep. Cohen trading tweets ending with "ilu" - e-speak for "I love you" - with an attractive young blonde woman during the State of the Union address, many jumped at the opportunity to openly conjecture about the pair's relationship, and the woman's identity.
The two wrote messages to one another back-and-forth for much of President Barack Obama's speech Tuesday night. Cohen eventualy deleted his tweets, but it was too late, as Politwoops, a website that archives tweets from politicians, had caught every word.
At first, Cohen told WMC-TV that the woman was just the daughter of a friend, but now he's revealed the woman is in fact his daughter, Victoria Brink, whom he learned of three years ago, according to ABC News.
Brink had told Cohen she was watching the speech, and the Democratic congressman responded, "pleased you are watching. ilu."
He then added, ""nice to know you were watchin SOTU(state of the union).Happy Valentines beautiful girl. Ilu," ABC News reported.
A lifelong bachelor, the 63-year-old Cohen held a private briefing in his office for reporters from NBC and CBS Thursday to squelch all the salacious rumors about him and Brink.
"Today after much discussion she was able to give me the freedom to say that I'm her father, that she cleared it up with the man who's been known as her father," Cohen said, CNN reported.
"I was extremely proud and happy that she was watching the State of the Union, and so I immediately tweeted her back and told her I was pleased she was watching and that I loved her," he explained to WREG, according to CNN.
Cohen apparently found the woman after doing some sleuthing on the Internet.
"I Googled her mother, found out she had a child and the math looked pretty accurate," Cohen said. "The mom told me we had a lot of catching up to do."
Cohen added that he was disappointed in how many media outlets covered the innocent tweets between him and his daughter as though they were evidence of some illicit scandal.
"It shocked me that female reporters, in addition to male reporters, did this reporting, which I considered sexist," he said. "My daughter is beautiful and she has a great figure. She has had some opportunities to pose as a swimsuit model, and that's all they could concentrate on."