Ex-gay leader George Rekers' gay sex scandal has leaked into the gubernatorial campaign of Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum.

McCollum, considered the leading candidate to capture the Republican nomination, personally urged the state to hire Rekers at a cost of $120,000 to testify as an expert witness in favor of a gay adoption ban.

Rekers of North Miami is the 61-year-old social conservative exposed by the Miami New Times as having hired a male prostitute off the pageviews of gay website Rentboy.com. The 20-year-old escort, named Lucien by the paper, but whose real name is Jo-Vanni Roman, claims he provided Rekers with daily body rubs in the nude during their 10-day European vacation, adding that Rekers liked having his anus rubbed by the younger man.

In a 2007 letter to the Department of Children and Families (DCF), McCollum urged then DCF Secretary Bob Butterworth to hire Rekers because his legal team “strongly” recommended him, according to the Florida Tribune.

“They believe that this expert and his testimony are necessary to ensure a successful result in this case,” he wrote.

The agency initially balked at the cost of hiring Rekers, adding that one witness – Walter Schumm, a professor of family studies at Kansas State University – would suffice.

“Dr. Schumm is a good expert, but his areas of expertise are different from Dr. Rekers,” wrote McCollum. “Our attorneys handling this case have searched long and hard for other expert witnesses with comparable expertise to Dr. Rekers and have been unable to identify any who would be available for this case.”

Rekers is a prominent ex-gay leader and social conservative. He is a Baptist minister who sits on the board of the National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH), a group that believes gay men and lesbians can – and should – alter their sexuality. He is also a founder of the socially conservative Family Research Council headed by Tony Perkins, an opponent of gay rights. And he's also the author of numerous books on sexuality, including Growing Up Straight: What Families Should Know About Homosexuality and Your Child's Sexual Identity.

McCollum has since reversed his opinion on Rekers, telling the Tribune that he “wouldn't do it again.”

Since the original story broke, a second gay escort has stepped forward to claim Rekers paid him for gay sex. Former stripper, escort and adult star Carl Sheperd (Chaz) alleges Rekers paid him $150 for “vanilla sex” at the Hyatt Regency Hotel at Chicago's O'Hare airport in 1992.

Rekers originally told the Times that he hired Roman to “lift his luggage” during the trip. He has denied that he's engaged in “inappropriate behavior,” saying on a Facebook posting that he hired his travel companion to privately minister to him, and has threatened to sue the paper because “I am not gay and never have been.”

Because gay men and lesbians have a high incidence of substance abuse and depression, they are unable to provide children a stable home,” Rekers testified in support of the nation's only outright ban on gay adoption enacting during the infamous Anita Bryant anti-gay crusades of the 70s.

The testimony, however, was found to be not credible by Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Cindy Lederman, who called the ban unconstitutional, the Miami Herald reported. Lederman's ruling has been appealed to the Third District Court of Appeals. A ruling is expected soon.