Speaker Hasert and the Over Friendly Congressman

‘ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.’ This is former Rep. Mark Foley’s e-mail response to an underage congressional page who had just answered Foley’s question about penis size. In fact, the Florida congressman had asked the kid to ‘get a ruler and measure it for me.’

All the lurid details are available for other readers and not just congressional pages. And, now, Foley, the former co-chair of the Congressional Missing and Exploited Children’s Caucus, has checked himself into an alcohol rehab.

This is the statement he issued: ‘I strongly believe that I am an alcoholic and have accepted the need for immediate treatment for alcoholism and other behavior problems.’

The operative word here is ‘other.’ Somehow, I get the feeling that Foley would have us believe that the alcohol made him do it. What a convenient scapegoat. As convenient as “the Devil made me do it,” that old excuse relied on by legions of evangelicals who need to blame someone, anything, other than themselves for their problems.

I’m wondering if House Speaker Dennis Hastert is going to check into an alcohol treatment center as well. Surely, he needs a defense for hiding knowledge of Mark Foley’s activities. Hastert, who was told months ago about the e-mails, characterized their content as ‘over friendly.’ Over friendly? Dennis, were you under the influence when you said this?

Here are some examples in one of the ‘over friendly’ e-mails.

‘Did you spank it this weekend?’

‘I always use lotion and the hand.’

‘Well, I have a totally stiff wood now.’

‘I am hard as a rock.’

Over friendly?

Wait, there’s more of this ‘over friendly’ messaging.

Writes Foley: ‘Do you really do it face down?’

And: ‘Where do you unload it?’

Also: ‘Completely naked?’

Then: ‘Cute butt bouncing in the air.’

‘Great visual’ and ‘I may try that.’ He even refers to his ‘one-eyed snake.’

If Dennis Hastert thinks this is merely ‘over friendly,’ one has to wonder what the house speaker would consider perverse and inappropriate.

Actually, I know the answer. Bill Clinton’s semen on a blue dress.

Missy Beattie lives in New York City. She’s written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. An outspoken critic of the Bush Administration and the war in Iraq, she’s a member of Gold Star Families for Peace. She completed a novel last year, but since the death of her nephew, Marine Lance Cpl. Chase J. Comley, in Iraq on August 6,’05, she has been writing political articles. She can be reached at: Missybeat@aol.com



Missy Beattie has written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. She was an instructor of memoirs writing at Johns Hopkins’ Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in BaltimoreEmail: missybeat@gmail.com