A source tells the New Republic that the White House pushed Foley into running for reelection out of fear that the GOP would lose the House without him.
Bob Novak reported last week that National Republican Congressional Committee chairman Tom Reynolds pushed a reluctant Mark Foley into running for reelection this year even after he learned that Foley had sent “overfriendly” e-mail messages to a 16-year-old House page.
As the New Republic’s Ryan Lizza is reporting, it appears that Reynolds wasn’t the only one putting pressure on Foley. Karl Rove’s political team may have pushed Foley into a race he didn’t want to run by telling him that his career as a lobbyist might suffer — hint, hint — if he didn’t keep his Florida seat safe for the GOP.
Lizza’s source, who describes himself as a “friend” of Foley’s, says that the congressman had all but decided not to run by early 2006. But when the friend saw Foley in the spring of this year, he says that Foley told him he was in the race after all. Foley said that “the White House and Rove gang” had pushed him into it. “He said, ‘The White House made it very clear I have to run,’” the source tells Lizza. The source says that Foley told him the White House had said that two more years in Congress would “enhance his success” as a lobbyist. “They’re scared of losing the House and the thought of two years of Congressional hearings, so I have two more years of duty,” the source quotes Foley as saying.
If the source has the story right, it’s hard to imagine a political plan that has backfired any worse than this one has. If Foley had decided not to run six months ago, the Republicans might — might — have lost his seat in the House, but his decision wouldn’t have had any repercussions on any other House seats. Now the GOP is braced to lose as many as 30 seats in the House next month — Reynolds’ among them — and a slew of new polls suggest that those fears aren’t exactly unfounded. Worse still: We haven’t even heard yet what former Reynolds and Foley aide Kirk Fordham is telling the House Ethics Committee today as to who knew what and when about the disgraced congressman’s contacts with underage House pages.
More Related Stories
- If Alex Pareene was a cable news executive...
- Portland's senseless war on fluoride
- Graphic video reportedly shows possible London machete attack suspect
- What economists get wrong about the jobs crisis
- Ted Cruz: "I don't trust the Republicans"
- Pa. governor "can't find" any Latinos to work in his administration
- Glenn Beck: "The American people have just been raped"
- "Original Coca-Cola had a very small amount of cocaine"
- Corporations accused of wrongdoing win battle to keep identities secret
- Weak, incompetent Democrats blow another one
- Lois Lerner, IRS disaster
- Cyber attacks could cause the next world war
- Donald Rumsfeld worried that marriage equality will lead to polygamy
- Experts: Fox News spying scandal a game-changer
- Biden cracks Obama teleprompter joke
- IRS official takes the Fifth: "I have not done anything wrong"
- Lessons from Lincoln leave gay immigrants behind
- Los Angeles elects first Jewish mayor
- Peter King: There's "hypocrisy" over aid by Oklahoma senators
- Anthony Weiner announces run for NYC mayor
- How policy nihilists in the Senate doomed LGBT immigrants
Featured Slide Shows
The week in 10 picsclose X
- 1 of 11
Lisa Montgomery embraces her nephew Thursday after a tornado tore apart her home in Cleburne, Texas. The twister killed six people and destroyed entire swaths of the North Texas town.
Credit: AP/LM Otero
Jack McMahon, the defense attorney for abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell, speaks outside the Criminal Justice Center in Philadelphia Tuesday. His client was convicted of killing three babies in his clinic, and will serve multiple life sentences.
Credit: AP/Matt Rourke
A photo taken Monday captures Vice President Joe Biden's response to a Milwaukee second-grader's innovative proposal to end America's epidemic of gun violence. This guy!
Credit: AP/Jenny Aicher
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., flanked by a grouper-eyed Michele Bachmann, addresses the IRS' admission that it targeted Tea Party groups in advance of the 2012 election. In an op-ed for CNN Thursday, the Kentucky senator slammed the president for his faux outrage.
Credit: AP/Molly Riley
Ousted IRS chief Steven Miller is sworn in on Capitol Hill Friday. Miller testified before the House Ways and Means Committee on the extra scrutiny the agency gave conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status.
Credit: AP/J. Scott Applewhite
Attorney General Eric Holder pauses as he testifies on Capitol Hill before the House Judiciary Committee Wednesday. Holder is under fire, among other things, for the Justice Department's gathering of phone records at the Associated Press.
Credit: AP/Carolyn Kaster
O.J. Simpson sits during an evidentiary hearing at Clark County District Court in Las Vegas, Nev., Thursday. Simpson, who is currently serving a nine-to-33-year sentence in state prison for armed robbery and kidnapping, is using a writ of habeas corpus to seek a new trial.
Credit: AP/Las Vegas Review-Journal/Jeff Scheid
Major Tom to ground control: On Sunday astronaut Chris Hadfield recorded the first music video from space, a cover of David Bowie's "Space Oddity."
Credit: AP/NASA/Chris Hadfield
When it rains it pours. President Barack Obama speaks during a news conference Thursday with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, inexplicably inspiring an #umbrellagate Twitter meme.
Credit: AP/Jacquelyn Martin
A smoke plume rises high above a road block at the intersection of County A and Ross Road east of Solon Springs, Wis., Tuesday. No injuries were reported, but the the wildfire caused evacuations across northwestern Wisconsin.
Credit: AP/The Duluth News-Tribune/Clint Austin
Recent Slide Shows
- 1 of 11