Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert, sitting left, with Senate Leader Bill Frist, sitting right, Rep. Roy Blunt, right, and Rep. James Sensenbrenner, responds to a question Friday, Sept. 29, regarding the resignation of Rep. Mark Foley. Foley resigned from Congress, effective immediately, in the wake of questions about e-mails he wrote to a male teenager who had been a page.
George Stephanopolous says that if Republican leaders knew of and kept quiet about the X-rated e-mails former Rep. Mark Foley sent to a page, “It’s game over. The leadership will have to resign…. As one top GOP aide told me this morning, ‘The place will burn down.’ ”
As badly as this country needs a change in the control of Congress, it would be awful for this to be the impetus. Democrats deserve the opportunity to win in November based on the strength of their ideas and policies—not via the fallout of a tawdry GOP sex scandal. But that’s the hand we’ve all been dealt.
There’s a weak excuse emerging from Republicans for Foleygate - they might have known about the e-mails to Rep. Alexander’s page, but they never knew about the explicit IMs. Too much of the media coverage right now is centering on that question, as if knowledge of the IMs is the only way to show the leadership was remiss.
But that’s irrelevant, and here’s why: Once ABC got hold of the e-mails, it took them one day to flush out the IMs. That’s what an actual investigation looks like. The Republican leadership simply didn’t want to know how bad the Foley situation was. That’s just as morally negligent as if they had started digging and found the IMs.
Also from ABC: GOP staff warned pages about Foley in 2001