Is Hastert's future a "moot point"?

Bob Novak suggests Republicans have given up any hope of holding on to the House.

Published October 9, 2006 7:23PM (EDT)

In a Survey USA poll out today, a whopping 26 percent of Americans say they think Dennis Hastert should stay on as speaker of the House in the wake of the Mark Foley scandal. Twenty percent think he should resign from the speaker's job and 45 percent think he should resign from Congress entirely.

Hastert says he's not going anywhere. And even though Republican House members continue to dump him from their campaign appearances, they're not exactly clamoring for Hastert to step aside, either.

Why not? Bob Novak has one theory: Hastert will be kicked out of the speaker's office anyway in January because Democrats are going to take back the House in November. "It's really moot," Novak quotes an unidentified Republican as saying. "We are sure to lose the House, and Denny never would want to be minority leader."

By Tim Grieve

Tim Grieve is a senior writer and the author of Salon's War Room blog.

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