Wednesday, October 18, 2006

More Sex Scandals On The Way

For many Americans, the recent political news seems more and more like a multi-count indictment, what with Bob Ney pleading guilty to bribery last week, the Tom Noe "Coingate" trial reaching the courts in Ohio, the Duke Cunningham scandal, the investigation into Jim Kolbe's camping trips with pages, Curt Weldon's sudden FBI problems, and lingering questions about Dennis Hastert using highway earmarks to increase his net worth from $300,000 to $6 million by forcing a freeway to go across land he owned. All of this crap is also piled between two slices of sandwich bread known as Tom DeLay and Mark Foley. The bad news for the Republican Party just keeps getting worse and worse and it keeps going on and on, one new corrupt example after another...

the punchline being that President Bush has declared October 15th-21st to be National Character Counts Week. No irony intended, I'm sure, though it abounds, regardless.

There's also the as-yet-unexploded "Hookergate" scandal involving various Republican congressmen taking sex as bribes in return for votes and earmarks for Brent Wilkes, a corrupt defense contractor/pimp who is said to have paid for poker 'n' poontang parties at the Watergate Hotel (yes, THAT Watergate). Duke Cunningham has already been investigated for it, and the FBI has been unable to get the hookers' madame to flip on her Congressmen clients, but a simple examination of Wilkes' money takes us to (on the Armed Services Committee) Duncan Hunter (CA), Chairman - $43,200, Jim Saxton (NJ) - $1,500, Ken Calvert (CA)- $8,000, (Appropriations) Jerry Lewis (CA), Chairman - $86,252, Bill Young (FL) - $6,500, Tom Delay (TX) - $70,000, Henry Bonilla (TX) - $19,500, Joe Knollenberg (MI) - $13,000, Robert Aderholt (AL) - $2,000, John Doolittle (CA) - $103,000, Don Sherwood (PA) - $1,000, Mark Kirk (IL) - $5,000, (Select Committee on Intelligence) Peter Hoekstra (MI) - $4,000, Heather Wilson (NM) - $3,000, Darrell Issa (CA) - $5,000, as well as Roy Blunt (MO) - $21,000, Larry Craig (ID) - $43,000, Benjamin Gilman (NY) - $42,146, Robert Livingston (LA) - $10,000, Devin Gerald Nunes (CA) - $13,000, Ronald Packard (CA) - $11,000, Charles Robb (VA-Senate and the only Democrat on this list) - $17,000, Billy Tauzin (LA) - $18,587 and Jerry Weller (IL) - $10,000. No word on this story lately, so it's up in the air as to whether the FBI is simply waiting until AFTER the election before dropping the bomb, or if the case has honestly gone nowhere.

Ah, but now, there's rumors of yet ANOTHER House page sex scandal, this one involving a 16-year-old female page and supposedly a congressman from Illinois who is supposedly going to resign tonight from the House (but, obviously, not before the House Leadership can get their lies straight this time). Rumor has it that it's a Republican Congressman, which means another pickup for Dems.

Interestingly, there aren't a LOT of Republican Congressmen from Illinois, so it's pretty easy for someone to figure it out in advance, if there is ANY truth to this rumor. We're limited to a suspect pool of: Henry J. Hyde (R - 06), Mark S. Kirk (R - 10), Gerald C. (Jerry) Weller (R - 11), Dennis Hastert (R - 14), Timothy V. Johnson (R - 15), Donald A. Manzullo (R - 16), Ray LaHood (R - 18), or John Shimkus (R - 19). There's also Judy Biggert (R - 13), but we'll go on the assumption that the rumors of Illinois/Republican/Male/Straight Sex are all correct. Pretty much ANY of these guys (except for Kirk who seems somewhat sane) would be great to shoot out of a scandal cannon into a brick wall, but Hastert, Shimkus, LaHood and Hyde are all virulent homophobes.

Shimkus is already toast because of his involvement with the Foley scandal (including allowing Foley ufettered access to pages even after being made aware of Foley's "problems" and hiding the entire scandal from the one Democrat in charge of the pages). I hope it's not Shimkus. I doubt it's Hastert... he'd have to be utterly retarded to get caught with his hand in the cookie jar like that. I'd love for it to be any of the Super Moralists such as Ray LaHood, Tim Johnson, Jerry Weller, or Don Manzullo, all of whom are homophobic war-loving retrograde maroons.

Again, this is all going on the assumption that the rumors of Illinois/Republican/Male/Straight Sex are all correct.

One certainly hopes that it's a Republican, if only to blunt the recent accusation/twist/spin making waves in Evangelical circles that the Foley Scandal isn't a case of powerful Republicans ignoring a child molester in their midst to maintain their political power, but instead a problem created by the existence of a cabal of closeted gays in the Republican Party.

A good straight Male-Republican-Congressman-on-underage-female-page scandal should let ALL the air out of that anti-gay scapegoating bullshit, though probably not in time to head off the Republicans' rumored purge of all gay staffers. I'd feel bad for the gay staffers in question... but they helped write and pass laws which stripped them of their own legal rights when confronted by firing for sexual orientation, so my pity meter is rather low when it comes to self-emasculating idiots.

So, let's see what Dana Milbank's got up his sleeve, shall we? And let's see it before the election.