House Democrats have washed their hands of Congressman Tim Mahoney (D-FL) as quickly as their Republican predecessors disowned Mark Foley (R-FL). But where Denis Hastert, John Boehner and other Republican leaders were hounded by questions about what they knew of the Foley matter, the press is giving Nancy Pelosi, Rahm Emanuel, Chris Van Hollen and others a free ride.According to Congressman Mahoney, he spoke to Rahm Emanuel about having an affair with a member of his staff early in 2007:
Mahoney said he was confronted by influential U.S. Rep. Rahm Emanuel, D-Ill., in early 2007 about rumors he was having an affair with a staffer.
"He said, 'If that's the case, stop it,' " Mahoney recalled. Emanuel, head of the House Democratic Caucus, is the former head of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and recruited Mahoney to run against Foley.
Asked why he didn't heed Emanuel's advice, Mahoney said, "The relationship at that point in time was intermittent and we needed to finish the transition (as a new member of Congress) and she was part of that."
A few months later, Allen left Mahoney's congressional office for his campaign staff. The transfer was not related to their affair or rumors about it, Mahoney said.
This confirms my suspicion (expressed a few days ago), but it conflicts with what Emanuel has said. His staff told ABC that he only just learned that Mahoney's paramour was on the Congressional payroll. What did Emanuel know, and when did he know it? And what advice did he give to Mahoney?
Further, Emanuel had recruited Mahoney to run for Congress and maintained an interest in him. But Chris Van Hollen was working with Mahoney on his re-election campaign, in his capacity as Chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. When did he learn about this violation of House ethics rules, and did he or Emanuel discuss it with Congressional leaders? Van Hollen's DCCC dropped its advertising in Mahoney's district days before Democrats say they learned of Mahoney's behavior. If this is true, what prompted their decision to abandon Mahoney?
There are plenty of other questions that ought to be posed to Emanuel and other House Democratic leaders. Among them:
Tim Mahoney promised Patricia Allen a job at his campaign's advertising firm. Were Emanuel, Van Hollen, or other Democratic leaders involved in extending this offer?
Mahoney secured earmarks for Martin County, Florida, while having an affair with a county representative. Was Appropriations Committee Chairman Obey aware of Mahoney's behavior, or were other Democratic leaders?
Did Speaker Pelosi, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, Whip Jim Clyburn, Rep. Emanuel, or Rep. Van Hollen see the letter that Ms. Patricia Allen’s attorney sent to Rep. Mahoney alleging sexual harassment? Did Rep. Mahoney or his staff share the letter with anyone? With whom did Rep. Mahoney share the letter?
Two years ago, the mainstream media hounded House leaders to find out what they knew of Mark Foley's inappropriate behavior with House pages. Now however, they are content to ignore the illegal activities of Foley's successor. It's almost enough to make you think there's a double standard.