Monday, July 20, 2009
Sex scandals involving Republicans are as common as sand at the beach. I know, there have been sex scandals involving Democrats — Bill Clinton and John Edwards come to mind, but when it comes to sheer volume, the GOP would make Caligula blush and cover his face in embarrassment.
In the last three years alone, Republican sex scandals have included:
• Brent Schepp, a Republican County Board Candidate charged with molesting a 14-year old girl before killing himself three days later
• Jeffrey Patti, a Republican Committee chairman from Sparta, NJ, arrested for distributing what experts called “some of the most offensive material in the child pornography world,” – a video of a 5-year-old girl being raped
• Steve Aiken, a campaign manager for a Republican candidate for Congress in Arizona, a former Quakertown, PA, police officer and self-proclaimed reverend, who was convicted of having sex with two underage girls.
• Louis Beres, a chairman for the Christian Coalition of Oregon who saw 3 of his family members accuse him of molesting them when they were pre-teens and Beres ultimately confessed
• Howard L. Brooks, a Republican legislative aide and adviser to a California assemblyman, charged with molesting a 12-year old boy and possessing child pornography
• Randall Casseday, a Washington Times newspaper executive, pleaded guilty to soliciting sex from a 13-year old girl on the internet
• Mark Foley, a Republican Congressman who resigned after trying to solicit sex from male congressional pages via an instant messenger program. The conversations included his asking a sixteen-year-old “stud” whether his penis was erect and requesting that he take out and measure his penis.
• Jim Gibbons, a Republican Congressma, accused by a Las Vegas casino cocktail waitress of grabbing her, shoving her against a wall and threatening her after she rebuffed his advances
• Ted Haggard, the married, former pastor of the New Life Church and resigned from his position as president of the National Association of Evangelicals after a former male prostitute alleged they had a methamphetamine-fueled sexual relationship
• Larry Craig, a Republican senator from Idaho, arrested by a plainclothes police officer after Craig solicited lewd behavior in a Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport airport men’s room
• Robert Allen, a Florida state Representative, arrested at a Veteran’s Memorial Park for solicitation of prostitution from an undercover male officer inside a restroom
• Vito Fossella, a vicious homophobe and the only Republican member of Congress from New York City, admitted to police to having a child out-of-wedlock when stopped for drunk driving in Virginia
• John Ensign, a U.S. Senator from Nevada, who said he would sponsor former President Bush’s failed effort to amend the Constitution to make gay marriage illegal in all 50 states, confessed to an extramarital affair with a married staffer, claiming she was trying to extort him
• Mark Sanford, the South Carolina governor, disappears on Father’s Day weekend, returning to confess an extramarital affair with a woman in Buenos Aires, Argentina and who used taxpayer dollars to pay for numerous junkets to South America
So, just where do these wayward conservative men go to learn how to keep their willy tamed and in their their pants? They flock to a stately brick townhouse located at 113 C St. S.E., Washington DC.
Some of the country’s most powerful men clamor to a bed at 113 C St. S.E. for the cheap rent, weekly dinners, Bible studies and spirituality sessions that serve as a sort of group therapy.
Current and former residents of 113 C St. S.E. include Sen. John Ensign, who still lives at the house, Gov. Mark Sanford, who lived there when he served in the U.S. House, and former Rep. Chip Pickering lived there while he carried on a long-term extramarital affair.
The large, brick townhouse, valued at more than $1.8 million, is run by Christian network of nonprofits and ministries known as “The Fellowship,” and headquartered in Arlington, VA. At onetime or another, 113 C St. S.E. has been home to Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK), Rep Mike Doyle (D-PA), Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI), Rep. Zach Wamp (R-TN), Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS) and former Reps. Steve Largent (R-OK), and Jim Ryun (R-KS), and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), have also studied the Bible at C Street.
Call it: the Betty Ford Clinic on the Potomac. A place where powerful and broken Republicans can go to get better. No reporters are allowed in and no one discusses the what goes on behind closed doors.
But in the wake of the recent C Street-related sex scandals, the code of silence seems less like patient privacy and more like “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.”