by Max Brantley
The Foley case doesn't take a genius to figure out. The House Speaker was warned of a potential problem. He did nothing. The House page committee was warned and failed to tell the Democratic member of the concern, contemporaneous with a huge contribution by Foley to the Republican Party. A Republican's hold on his seat was more important than any concerns about a 16-year-old in the care of Congress.
Republicans apparently fear the public may get this one. Wash. Post::
Republican strategists said yesterday that public revulsion over the sexually graphic online conversations between Rep. Mark Foley (R-Fla.) and former House pages could compound the party's problems enough to tip the House to the Democrats in November -- and could jeopardize the party's hold on the Senate as well.
As House GOP leaders defended their role in handling revelations that forced Foley on Friday to give up his House seat, party strategists said the scandal threatens to depress turnout among Christian conservatives and could hamper efforts to convince undecided and swing voters that Republicans deserve to remain in the majority.
There was intense anger among social conservative activists in Washington yesterday, and some called for House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) to resign.
Republican operatives closely following the battle for the House and Senate said that they are virtually ready to concede nearly a third of the 15 seats the Democrats need to recapture control of the House, and that they will spend the next five weeks trying to shelter other vulnerable incumbents from the fallout of the Foley scandal in hopes of salvaging a slender majority.