Monday, October 02, 2006

Hastert's CYA Letter

Did you hear that Denny Hastert (R-Denial) has asked the Justice Department to investigate the Foley scandal? He hasn't. He's asked the DOJ to investigate who leaked the scandal to the media.

Look over there! Don't look at me!

Unclaimed Territory: Hastert's letter to the DOJ advances the cover-up and worsens the scandal

The premise of Hastert's letter is that the only issue worth investigating is whether someone specifically knew of the more explicit IMs, and that anyone who did not know of those IMs by definition has done nothing wrong, even if -- as is true for Hastert -- there was ample other information they knew of regarding Foley's conduct. This is how Hastert defines what ought to be investigated (emphasis added):

Unlike the first communication, the second communication was a set of instant messages that contained sexually explicit statements and were reportedly generated three years ago. Last week, ABC News first reported these sexually explicit instant messages which led to Representative Foley's resignation. These sexually explicit communications warrant a criminal referral in two respects.

Hastert has defined the relevant issues in such a way as to ensure that he and his House allies would be excluded from the investigation just as long as they managed to avoid learning about the IMs specifically.

But the scandal here is that Hastert and friends deliberately avoided investigating the glaring signs that Foley was sexually pursuing pages.

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