Thursday, October 05, 2006

Open Letter *Updated with Timeline

Dearest Gang of 500:

The most common denominator threaded throughout this story is the question: To whom should those of us in the media assign blame? Our answer is simple: the blame lies squarely with Mark Foley. Mark Foley lied. Mark Foley engaged in widespread deception. Mark Foley disgraced the institution to which he was elected to serve. Mark Foley resigned in disgrace before the entire Congress expelled him from office. Mark Foley should be and will be held accountable for his despicable actions.

Additionally, any individual or individuals with knowledge of these explicit instant messages between Mark Foley and underage pages or former pages should come forward and provide this information to the proper authorities. These witnesses must cooperate with law enforcement about their knowledge of these explicit communications. Also any individuals who had prior knowledge of these instant messages and provided them to the media instead of alerting the proper authorities must answer questions about their motives and the possibility that they put others at risk.

House Democrats interested only in tearing down reputations in order to make a power grab will be sorely disappointed. Republicans are unified in our outrage against Mark Foley and resolute in our determination to complete a full and thorough investigation of the facts. That House Democrats have decided to merely resort to crass political maneuvering indicates they are motivated only by their political self-interest.

Ron Bonjean
Communications Director
Office of the Speaker

Kevin Madden
Press Secretary
Office of the House Majority Leader

***The Gang of 500 refers to political insiders and journalists who influence the daily media narrative in US politics.


The following is a timeline of events connected to Mark Foley.
2001 — A Republican staff member warns pages “to watch out for Congressman Mark Foley.” A former page says that they were told “don’t get too wrapped up in him being too nice to you and all that kind of stuff.” [ABC, 10/1/06]

2003 — Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL) has sexually explicit IM exchanges with an underage boy who worked as a Congressional page. [ABC News, 9/29/06]


SUMMER 2005 — Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL) sends inappropriate emails to another former Congressional page. [CREW]

SEPTEMBER 2005 — Rep. Rodney Alexander (R-LA), who sponsored the page, learns “of the e-mails from a reporter.” [AP, 9/29/06; CQ, 9/30/06]

FALL 2005 — “Tim Kennedy, a staff assistant in the [Speaker J. Denis Hastert’s] Office, received a telephone call from Congressman Rodney Alexander’s Chief of Staff who indicated that he had an email exchange between Congressman Foley and a former House page…[Mike] Stokke [Deputy Chief of Staff for Speaker Hastert] called the Clerk and asked him to come to the Speaker’s Office so that he could put him together with Congressman Alexander’s Chief of Staff.” [Hastert Statement, 9/30/06]

LATE 2005 — Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL), Chairman of the House Page Board, “was notified by the then Clerk of the House, who manages the Page Program, that he had been told by Congressman Rodney Alexander (R-LA) about an email exchange between Congressman Foley and a former House Page.” Shimkus interviewed Foley and told him “to cease all contact with this former house page.” He did not inform Rep. Dale Kildee (D-MI), the only Democrat on the House page Board. [Roll Call, 9/29/06]

FEBRUARY/MARCH 2006 — Alexander tells NRCC chairman Tom Reynolds about “the existence of e-mails between Mark Foley and a former page of Mr. Alexander’s.” Reynolds tells Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-IL) about the emails and his conversation with Alexander. [Reynolds Statement, 9/30/06; Roll Call, 9/30/06; Hastert Statement, 9/30/06]

SPRING 2006 — House Majority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) learns of “inappropriate ‘contact’ between Foley and a 16-year-old page.” After leaning about Foley’s conduct, Boehner told Speaker of the House J. Denis Hastert who assured Boehner he would “take care of it.” Later, Boehner changed his story and told the Washington Post he didn’t remember whether he talked to Hastert. [Washington Post, 9/30/06; New York Times, 10/1/06]

MAY 10, 2006 — Reynold’s personal PAC, TOMPAC, donates $5,000 to Foley’s campaign. [New York Daily News, 9/30/06]

JULY 27, 2006 — Foley writes a $100,000 check to the NRCC, chaired by Reynolds. [New York Daily News, 9/30/06]

JULY 27, 2006 — Foley, still co-chairman of the Congressional Missing and Exploited Children’s Caucus, attends a signing ceremony at the White House for the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006. [White House, 9/27/06; Talkingpointsmemo, 9/30/06; Washington Post, 10/1/06]

SEPTEMBER 28, 2006 — ABC publishes emails between Foley and former page. [ABC, 9/28/06]

SEPTEMBER 29, 2006 — Foley resigns. [ABC, 9/29/06]

SEPTEMBER 29, 2006 — ABC publishes sexually explict Instant Messages between Foley and several former pages. [ABC, 9/29/06]


SEPTEMBER 29, 2006 — “Aides to the speaker [Hastert] say he was not aware until last week of inappropriate behavior by Rep. Mark Foley, R-Fla., who resigned on Friday after portions of racy e-mail exchanges between him and current and former underage congressional pages became public.” [Chicago Tribune, 9/30/06]

SEPTEMBER 30, 2006 — Hastert admits he was told about the emails by Reynolds in the spring. [Hastert Statement, 9/30/06]

I find it interesting that someone had transcripts of these IMs for approximately three years. That means they were sitting on information that this man was a sexual predator and decided to wait until the most opportune (opportune for Democrats anyways) moment to release them to ABC.
Who keeps transcripts of their IMs?
Also Nancy Pelosi blocks former FBI Director Louis Freeh from conducting the investigation claiming that he "isn't good enough". Strange because he was good enough to be selected by Bill Clinton to run the FBI.

13 Comments:

At 6:34 PM, Blogger Obob said...

we are one month from the election, let's see what comes up. This may blow over if something should come up ... stay tuned

 
At 7:41 PM, Blogger Steve Harkonnen said...

Have you checked out my latest post about this? I picked it up over at Drudge. The IM's at least may be fake.

 
At 10:13 PM, Blogger Elmer's Brother said...

seems succinct and to the point

 
At 5:46 AM, Blogger American Crusader said...

I have seen that report Steve but if they were faked I doubt that Mark Foley would have immediately resigned and then checked himself into a rehab.

 
At 6:01 AM, Blogger Brooke said...

I heard that ABC knew that the page was in fact 18 when all this happened, not 16... The whole thing is scummy, but will we now find out that ABC was creating evidence? Just like the Bush Natl' Guard papers, it isn't "factually accurate, but true."

 
At 6:47 AM, Blogger Gayle said...

I also posted about this, AC. The kid was 18 when the e-mails started and is now 21. Not that it makes what Foley did okay, but it's certainly not illegal.

It will be interesting to get to the bottom of this.

I believe Foley put himself into rehab to beat alcoholism, but I'm not positive about that. We need more information.

 
At 10:10 AM, Blogger American Crusader said...

My biggest question is who held onto these transcripts for the past three years?

 
At 12:03 PM, Blogger Steve Harkonnen said...

Drudge has apparently fallen silent on the IM's being faked issue. There's been no cable media about it either.

 
At 12:16 PM, Blogger American Crusader said...

I think the latest news is that ABC misreported the age of the page in question. Apparently he was at least 17, maybe 18 or both depending on when the IMs were sent.
It might not be a big difference in age from 16 but I think the legal difference puts it in a different category. Difference states have different laws and I'm not sure which apply here.

 
At 1:13 PM, Blogger Diversity Project said...

I see you still haven't got a life yet. Your stupidity is nearing record levels.

 
At 4:18 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Crusader,
The entire sordid mess disgusts me.

As I see it, Foley was a predator, various people covered it up, and the Dems are playing the whole mess for political gain.

Maybe more details about the age of the young man will be forthcoming. Nevertheless, I see no men of integrity in the lot of them.

 
At 10:17 PM, Blogger FreeCyprus said...

>>
Nah, I doubt the IMs are fake. The guy apparently had a history of "inappropriate" behaviour in the past.

Anyway, both sides are using this perverted story to sling the shit but I thank American Crusader for keeping the focus where it belongs:

"...the blame lies squarely with Mark Foley"

 
At 7:45 AM, Blogger American Crusader said...

freecypus..I agree. The blame rests on Mark Foley's shoulders.
And unfortunately our politicians are more worried about their position or are interested in exploiting this incident.

AOW..This disgusts me also.
Any sexually explicit sexual conversation between two men is bound to do that but when one of the individuals is in a position of authority and the other is a minor it disgusts me even more. Even if the minor is 17 or 18.

 

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