Iowa Lawmaker Reads ‘Sex After Sixty’ During Debate

PHOTO: In this Feb. 10, 2015, photo is State Rep. Ross Paustian, R-Walcott, at the Statehouse in Des Moines, Iowa.
AP Photo
In this Feb. 10, 2015, photo is State Rep. Ross Paustian, R-Walcott, at the Statehouse in Des Moines, Iowa.

Things are getting a little steamy in the Iowa statehouse.

During a lengthy debate on public school teachers’ collective bargaining rights, Republican state Rep. Ross Paustian decided to slip in a little racy reading.

Here he is, apparently unabashed, perusing “Sex After Sixty” in the statehouse chamber:

Paustian, 59, told the Des Moines Register the book was passed to him by fellow Rep. Robert Bacon, also a Republican.

"I’m getting a lot of pretty vicious emails from people, so I have to explain,” Paustian told ABC affiliate KCRG. “The main thing is I was totally engaged in what was going on on the floor … I knew what was going on. I knew how we were going to vote on amendments. So it wasn’t like I wasn’t paying attention to what was going on."

“If any of my constituents were offended, I apologize. I certainly wasn’t trying to offend anybody,” he said, noting that he had just picked up the book to glance at it when the photo was taken.

Paustian isn’t the only lawmaker whose attention seemed to wander during the debate.

The left-leaning advocacy group Progress Iowa posted a photo of Republican state Rep. Clel Baudler supposedly watching Netflix:

Neither Paustian, Baudler nor Bacon immediately returned ABC News’ request for comment.