The real news is that Republican endorsement of torture is now official. But despite events of global import, Republicans still love a sex scandal. Maybe here's one of their own:
A 16-year-old male former congressional page concerned about the appropriateness of an e-mail exchange with a congressman alerted Capitol Hill staffers to the communication.
Congressman Mark Foley's office says the e-mails were entirely appropriate and that their release is part of a smear campaign by his opponent.
In the series of e-mails, obtained by ABC News, from Rep. Foley (R-FL) to the former page, Foley asks the young man how old he is, what he wants for his birthday and requests a photo of him.
John at Americablog notes that Foley's home page is all about protecting children from predators.
Up for even more creepy? Foley's congressional home page is all about child sex offenders. Why, because Foley is the Co-chairman of the Missing and Exploited Children Caucus. Yes, this is the guy the Republicans put in charge of taking care of child sex offenders. Seriously, this is sick.
John has some scans of the emails themselves.
Meanwhile, Foley's office is playing "blame the victim":
Elizabeth Nicolson, Foley's Chief of Staff, said they believe the e-mail exchange began when the page asked Foley for a recommendation and that the subsequent exchange was totally innocent. She said Foley's office believes the e-mails were released by the opposition as part of an "ugly smear campaign."
Before you get too dizzy from your spin job, Elizabeth Nicolson, let's remember that it's the page himself who's creeped out. Is this all his fault? Is that the policy advocated in all these child protection policies Mark Foley advocates? Blame the victim?
Now, this is about when the right-wing sycophants will attack the page for wearing a sweater, right? Oh wait, the page is a guy. That won't work. Well, they'll figure an angle to blame Bill Clinton, just you wait and see.
(If this were a Democratic congressman, imagine the howls you'd be hearing from the entire wingnut dittosphere.)
And it's a shame because, despite Foley's role helping George Bush steal the Florida election, he's fairly moderate as far as Republicans go. And it's not like he hasn't been under the sexuality microscope before. If this blows up...and it probably will (Republicans will run away from him like he's a Army recruiter), his replacement will likely be another Republican loon of the type we have come to expect from Florida.