Former chief of staff for Courser and Gamrat breaks silence to FOX 17

Posted at 10:48 PM, Sep 15, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-15 22:48:11-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- The former chief of staff for both Cindy Gamrat and Todd Courser is breaking his silence to FOX 17 about the affair between his two former bosses. Not only is Keith Allard saying the affair made everyone in the office uncomfortable, but he also claims Courser retaliated against staff who wouldn't send out that now infamous email.

Allard said that he stopped working for the former state representatives in July, about a month before their affair became public. As a state employee, he felt the responsibility to do what was right for the people they served and not hide their behavior.

"Everyone has had that one boss that they didn't like, they didn't get along with, that was terrible to them," said Allard. "There's something very gratifying about watching that boss get fired on live television."

By June, Courser and Gamrat were open about their affair in the office, and with so many people aware of their relationship, staff became isolated from others in the capital, Allard said.

"There were rumors, there were Twitter accounts," said Allard. "It was extremely uncomfortable for our staff. We eventually just stopped leaving our office because we'd be in the elevators hearing the giggles, hearing the rumors."

Allard said that both Courser and Gamrat isolated themselves from other state representatives, focusing on their relationship instead of creating new ones.

"If you want to be a successful legislator, you have to form relationships. Multiple, plural. They formed one relationship, and it was wildly inappropriate."

Even though Courser claims his conservatism singled him out, and resulted in unfair treatment. Allard said there are other state representatives more conservative than Courser, who he said have never faced expulsion.

"I'd hesitate to give Todd advice given that he's never listened to it in the past, but I think in this time it's best that he steps away from the media, step away from the Facebook and spend some time apologizing to his family."

Allard said that there was a big difference between what his former bosses practiced versus what they preached.

"These were two people who were the supposed champions of traditional marriage while their private approach to the sacrament was anything but traditional," said Allard.

With more people being made aware of their affair, Allard said that staff was pressured to send an elaborate email that included a fake story line that Courser had sex with a male prostitute.

"Todd asked one of our staffers, he was 24-years-old at the time, to send that email for him, Brought him to his office in the middle of the night and asked him to send it," said Allard. "That staffer refused, and I applaud him for doing the right thing."

"There were two people in that office that were unfit for Lansing, that was former representative Todd Courser and former representative Cindy Gamrat," said Allard.

Allard said that the affair between Courser and Gamrat "on the clock" is a perfect example of why state legislators should only work part time.

Allard said that if he had a vote in the matter, he would have voted to expel the two state representatives. Taxpayers shouldn't be discouraged, he added, calling the two "rotten apples." He said that 95 percent of Lansing does not operate in a dishonest way.