Senator Larry Craig – Red Herring, No. 2,323,128,799

New York Times editorial on August 31:

“The Republican Party is in quite a rush to keelhaul Senator Larry Craig
for his run-in with the vice squad in an airport men’s room. Disclosure
of the senator’s guilty plea to disorderly conduct set off a frenzy to
demand an investigation by the Senate’s somnolent Ethics Committee and
to strip Mr. Craig of his committee seniority. Some of the senator’s
peers simply demanded that he resign.

No similar leadership chorus for judgment has been heard about any number of other scandalous revelations on the party’s plate.

There’s
the F.B.I.’s inquiry into whether Senator Ted Stevens swung a
quid-pro-quo deal for a government contractor who eventually renovated
his Alaska home. There’s also Senator David Vitter’s presence on the
client list of a Washington brothel. Mr. Vitter, a social conservative,
pleaded guilty to “sin” (heterosexual) and no leadership call ensued
for a thorough in-house ethics inquiry. Certainly, no Republican called
for the resignation of Mr. Vitter, who comes from Louisiana, which has
a Democratic governor who would then replace him. Mr. Craig is from a
safe state with a Republican governor.

Mr. Craig’s explanation of
his behavior may make little sense to the average voter trying to
fathom how he was taken in by a police sting against lewd public
behavior. The senator quietly copped a disorderly conduct plea after
taking two months to consider his arrest and his options. Once it hit
the media, he claimed his judgment was clouded but his heterosexuality
unblemished.

Underlying the hurry to disown the senator, of course, is the party’s
brutal agenda of trumpeting the gay-marriage issue. To the extent
Senator Craig, a stalwart in the family values caucus, might morph into
a blatant hypocrite before the voters’ eyes, he reflects on the party’s
record in demonizing homosexuality. The rush to cast him out betrays
the party’s intolerance, which is on display for the public in all of
its ugliness. But it also betrays their political uneasiness as the
next election approaches.”

Today, the paper is reporting the Senator is stepping down. It’s too bad.

If anything, Senator Craig should be blasted for not having his “Queer Game” together. Trying to get your groove on in a public bathroom is popular enough to have been depicted in the adult cable drama “Nip/Tuck”, but that’s not excuse for stupidity imitating art. Craig should have used the full power of his office to snatch up all the closeted Republi-pages/etc. on call in DC. As rampant as homosexuality is among Republicans, this should have been as easy as rolling out of bed or rolling away from his wife (I wonder what her “girlfriends” think…they probably knew too.) Craig’s scandal couldn’t have come along at a better time to shift the spotlight away from those issues raised by the Times – and away from many issues not raised by the Times.

Also, what in the hell is the Times talking about when referring to “intolerance” on this case? Does that word mean anything remotely close to what those folks at Webster’s intended when they cobbled together a definition? An old, crusty ass married Senator solicits sex in a bathroom and you choose to use the word “intolerance”? You might as well suggest his civil right to get a filling was abridged by the police. Was this a personal holocaust of infringement? The Times is still a rag – they take themselves a bit too seriously. Jason Blair, Jason Blair, Jason Blair!

I suppose this event is actually important to someone somewhere. It’s hard to believe it could be much more than cannon fodder for political arsenals to anyone other than his children.

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4 comments

  1. Im really getting tired of all these right wing Christian leaders and the family value Gay hating Republican leaders getting caught with their Johnnies in the wrong place. Let me warn all you GUYs that scream HATE the loudest. 9 times out of 10 IT usually means you have something to hide. Men that are truely secure with their sexuality dont have such issues. Gay marriage does not effect anyone but the people that love each other so much they want to commit to each other. When hetersexual marriage divorce marriage rates reach less than 50%. Then we can start talking family values.

  2. The fact that Sen. Craig plead guilty to a crime but did not disclose it doesn’t strike you, T3, as a serious transgression for a lawmaker?

  3. I’m not sure the relevance of Al Gore III to Sen. Craig here, seeing that Gore, fils is neither a politician or a public person. Both pleaded guilty to crimes as charged; both will make some type of restitution.

    The tragedy here is the GOP’s implicit rationale for throwing Craig under the bus isn’t his crime or probable breach of Senate ethics, but his homosexuality. It’s a classic example of gay-baiting politics — a strategy employed by both major parties whenever it serves either’s self-interest.

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