Friday, December 08, 2006

Foley Fallout: GOP Negligent, Not Criminal

A bipartisan House Ethics Committee report on the handling of former Rep. Mark Foley's inappropriate behavior towards House pages has concluded that Speaker Dennis Hastert (R) and his GOP leadership team were negligent, but not criminal in their response to reports they received of his inappropriate behavior at least as early as last spring, if not much sooner. A pattern of conduct "to remain willfully ignorant of the potential consequences" set in out of members' concern they "risked exposing Foley's homosexuality" and because of "political considerations" according to the report.

Democratic members of the House Ethics Committee assure the public the report wasn't a whitewash. "This is not the jury-rigged result of a series of compromises but rather the right report on this subject," Rep. Howard Berman (D-CA) is quoted as saying. Foley's behavior remains under investigation by Florida law enforcement for potential criminal wrongdoing on his part.


Anonymous said...

No surprise for anyone who studied Law.

Anonymous said...

This investigation was governed by House rules. Which were substantially watered down in 1995 by Speaker Gingrich, and again in 2003 by Speaker Hastert.

Pretty much what anyone should've expected.

However, in the Court of Common Sense, if I'm Speaker, and I'm told in 2005 about a top House Republican who's inappropriately communicating with Pages, I call him in and tell him: Knock it off, or I will force you out.

That trip to the woodshed never happened. In part because Hastert feared for his own power structure. And in part because there was a quid pro quo on the whole gay issue. Sadly.

Oh, sorry, it wasn't because he was gay and preyed on young proteges supposedly under his institution's control. It was because he had a drinking problem.