Thursday, October 05, 2006

Boy, times sure are a changing...

This isn't the first time a member of Congress has got caught with the hand in the proverbial cookie jar. As ABC's Liz Marlantes points out sex scandals in Congress are nothing new.

In 1983 the House Ethics committee determined that not one, but two Congressmen had engaged in "sexual activity" with pages. That's seems to me to be a little bit more provocative that the "overly friendly" emails Foley admits to.

The house voted to censure both members of the 1983 scandal. One apologized and later lost his seat. The other stood his ground. Held a press conference with the page that he was accused of having a relationship with and stayed in Congress for six more terms.

So what makes the Foley case different than the previous episode?

Last Friday the ABC News investigative team confronted Foley about email's and instant messages that he has sent to a male page. Some, as you can see, were quite explicit. Before ABC could air the piece, Foley announced that he was resigning from the U.S. House.

There are reports that ABC didn't have the transcripts of Foley's computer conversations exclusively.The New York Times says that at least two Flordia papers had copies of the emails but decided not to publish the stories because their editors thought it was "chit-chat."

Even Brian Ross at ABC had been sitting on the e-mails since this summer.

So what does this say about the power of the media today?

The story has snowballed into an avalanche. Now Democrats and Republicans are calling for investigations, prosecutions and resignations. Three things no politician wants to be the subject of less than five weeks away from an election.

This sure shows how much power the press has gained with technology. People are going to have to do a whole lot more than clear there computer cookies to not get caught with their hand in the jar.



At Friday, October 06, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Depending on the nature of the "scandal," I think that people in "power" should just be able to own up to their actions and then, after making the appropriate actions, move on, whether to be punished or to be left alone. If a man can apologize, then I think the media needs to stop punishing him over and over again.

Foley was definitely wrong in his advances to the page, but he's stepped down now and is apparently in rehab. Hastert has apologized for not acting sooner, but he doesn't plan to resign and I think that's fine. I think the media should definitely tell these stories and tell them thoroughly but more often than not, the media tends to kill a topic and even watch the grass grow over the mound after it's been buried.

In this case however, I understand that the media is still sticking to this story like glue because we don't know where the investigations are leading. But in the meantime, let's tell more other news.

So, when is North Korea planning to hit California with that nuclear bomb?



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