Senators (and Senator Wannabes) Behaving Badly
Roy Moore. Judge Roy Moore. Some might call him a creepy, overly religious social conservative who hates everybody but Christians. Others might call him a pedophilic, overly religious social conservative. And still others just don't care.
Let me state up front that IF Judge Moore is guilty of fondling a 14 year old girl, he deserves to be dropped into the lowest level of Hell where his punishment will be as the eternal sex slave to an aptly named demon called Fishhook.
But should guilt be determined by reports in a newspaper? And should someone step aside without having a chance to disprove or cast doubt on the allegations?
I believe the US Senate should hold Judge Moore to the standard that other Senators have been held to. So, let’s review a few cases.
First, I want to talk about Senator David Walsh, D-MA. Senator Walsh could be described as a rather pudgy dandy. He wore impeccably tailored shirts and suits, and fabulous shoes on his “dainty” feet.
In 1942, the New York Post accused Walsh of visiting a male brothel in Brooklyn which was known as a nest of Nazi spies. The accusations the Post made against the Senator were so lurid for the time that the newspaper couldn’t refer to the establishment as a brothel or accuse the Senator of homosexuality. Nope, the Senator Walsh was accused of “visiting a house of degradation.” Which kind of makes it sound like the good Senator was into whips and chains and other things.
Senator Walsh denied these charges, and the Senate had the FBI investigate the matter. The FBI could not find any evidence that Walsh had visited the “house of degradation”. However, the FBI did find a whole lot of “derogatory information” about him.
When Walsh’s fellow Senator Alben Barkley, D-KY read out the FBI’s findings on the Senate floor, he noted that he would not enter the report into the Congressional Record, “because it contains disgusting and unprintable things.”
Did Senator Walsh visit a homosexual brothel in Brooklyn and disport himself with pretty boys and Nazi spies? We don’t know. The newspaper said he did. The FBI said they couldn’t find any evidence of it. It's known as the Scottish Verdict--Insufficient Evidence.
Who do you believe?
Senator Walsh stayed in the Senate until 1947, when he retired from public office.
Right now, a jury is deciding the fate of Senator Bob Menendez. He's being tried on a dozen counts of corruption and bribery. He's also been accused (but not being tried for) hiring underage prostitutes in the Dominican Republic. And not a single senator, including Mitch McConnell, has called for him to step down.
How about other Senators who have been accused of behaving badly. What happened to them?
John Edwards, fathered a child on his mistress whilst his wife was DYING OF CANCER. He came within a whisker of being elected Vice President of the United States.
Pete Domenici, D-NM, acknowledged that he fathered a child with the daughter of a fellow Senator in 1978. He was a married 46. She was an unmarried 24. It was an open secret in the Senate. But Pete D didn’t go public until after he left the body.
Mel Reynolds, Congressman, D-IL didn’t resign until AFTER he was convicted of statutory rape.
Jack Kennedy was known to have lots of pretty young things around; including Mimi Alford the 19 year old intern who lost her virginity to the President of the United States. In the First Lady’s bedroom. She got sent home in a limo.
Bill Clinton was found not guilty of perjury (even though he lost his law license in Arkansas over the exact same charge) in his Senate impeachment trial.
So far, it seems like the standard for behavior in the US Senate is a pretty low bar.
And for my final two examples, let’s have the Senate treat Roy Moore exactly the same way as these guys were treated.
Strom Thurmond, D-R, SC was found to have fathered a mixed-race child by a 15 yr old African American woman who worked for his family. In 1925. She was 15. Strom was 23 or 24. The news came out in 2003, just a few months after the old goat died. Did the Senate demand any monuments to him be torn down?
Robert Byrd was a member of the Ku Klux Klan. Even THAT is not grounds to disqualify you for the Senate.
And now we turn to the Lion of The Senate. None other than the youngest Kennedy, Ted.
Ted Kennedy had quite the career in the Senate, and quite the reputation with the ladies. He managed to commit vehicular homicide when he allowed Mary Jo Kopechne to drown in Chappaquiddick, MA in the summer of 1969. Teddy, whose wife was pregnant and about to miscarry, had attended a party, got blind drunk, and drove his car into the water. He got out and spent about 17 hours getting his story straight before he notified the police.
Ted had just been elected to the Senate in 1968.
The Senate allowed him to stay, despite the fact that he killed a woman. Yes, boys and girls, you can kill somebody and still be a Senator.