Thanks to the tireless investigative journalism of Bachelor redditors and ProPublica reporters, it has been uncovered that multiple Bachelor and Bachelorette alums received Payment Protection Program (PPP) loans during the pandemic.
According to Vulture, season 22 Bachelor Arie Luyendyk Jr., former Bachelor contestant Tayshia Adams, and former Bachelorette winner Dale Moss all earned about $21,000 each through the federal program, while season 23 Bachelor Colton Underwood received around $11,000. (Moss reportedly has not yet received his.)
Unlike his fellow Bachelor pals, Underwood applied for the funds for his nonprofit organization, which provides resources to people living with cystic fibrosis. Otherwise, it seems like Adams, Luyendyk Jr., and Moss sought out the loan largely to support their one-person enterprises, which mostly center around them being former Bachelor and Bachelorette stars.
At this point, Adams’s spokesperson would like to clarify that she used her PPP loan to put an employee on her payroll, though I’m not sure that information significantly changes the basic dynamics of the situation. (Consider, for example, that this spokesperson must be that one employee.) “As a business owner, television and podcast host, and brand ambassador, Tayshia obtained a PPP Loan that enabled her to hire an employee, to whom she offers market-based pay and benefits,” the spokesperson told Vulture. “Since exhausting the PPP Loan funds, but in light of the growing economy, Tayshia has committed to retaining her employee for the foreseeable future.”
I don’t believe it’s worth it to parse out who deserves what during a pandemic, but it’s clear that the PPP loan system—which was intended to help bail out small businesses and avoid more layoffs—was rife with misuse. Some employers who received the funds used them “to buy splashy luxury items for themselves” rather than putting the money toward paying bills or retaining employees, according to the Department of Justice. Celebrities like Kanye West and Jeffree Star, who both received PPP disbursements, didn’t necessarily violate the law, but they did raise eyebrows, particularly since PPP funding was finite—the budget ran out before many small businesses could apply.
I think it’s OK to raise an eyebrow at these Bachelor alums as well.