Archive for John Ensign

PhotOH! The faces of GOP scandals that won't go away


scandal scandalous

Republicans are positively out of control these days, aren't they? Why, it's almost as if GOP scandals are everywhere! That's because they are everywhere; if it's not one corrupt politician, it's another.

Here's a visual guide to some of the most recent culprits. Think of it as a pictorial road map that's so easy to follow, even a right wing nut job could understand it. And if I omitted any other obvious GOP Moments o' Disgrace that broke over the past couple of years or are currently rearing their ugly heads, please let me know. I'm still not myself yet, so the ol' brain is barely functioning:

chris christie schultz i know nothing

bob mcdonnell legal trouble gifts

rand paul plagiarist

liz cheney fishing license lie scandal

DARRELL ISSA: THE EARLY YEARSThe above should be considered scandalous.

Ken Cuccinelli gifts scandal

remember mark sanford

c street gang scandal

c street kill the gay bill scandal maddow

vitter depends


Massachusetts GOP demands Ed Markey cancel "disgusting" fundraiser with Eliot Spitzer. Double standard much?


double standard

You can't make this stuff up. Via Livewire:

In a statement, Kirsten Hughes, chairman of MassGOP, said that it's "disgusting" that [Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA)] would "rub elbows" with [Eliot] Spitzer, who resigned in 2008 amid a prostitution scandal. 

You are judged by the company you keep and it’s disgusting for Congressman Markey to rub elbows with a man best known for his solicitation of prostitutes,” said Kirsten Hughes, MassGOP Chairman.“Instead of lining his campaign coffers with donations from the disgraced Eliot Spitzer, Markey should immediately cancel the fundraiser and denounce Spitzer’s abhorrent and unacceptable behavior.  Anything short of a public condemnation and cancellation would send the wrong message to women everywhere.”

Did anyone on the right "keep company" with Newt Gingrich? How about David Vitter? Oh wait, Reince Priebus gave David Vitter a pass because “that’s a 5-year-old story.”  (Spitzer resigned five years ago.)

Okay then, how about "rubbing elbows" with the "disgusting" John Ensign? And the "abhorrent" Mark Sanford? Wasn't their behavior unacceptable? And this is just the tip of the iceberg.

All of those Republicans claimed they stood for "family values" (Spitzer didn't). All of them are hypocrites. Did they "keep company" with other Republicans? Call me crazy, but I'm guessing they did.

Here's a thought, Kirsten Hughes: If Mark Sanford can assert that if God forgives you, then cheating on your wife and lying to America shouldn’t matter any more, so can Eliot Spitzer.

gop family values


Husband cuckolded by Ensign rips rising Santorum


Sorry, the headline makes me giggle. I had almost forgot about this, what a scummy thing to do. Very "family values". Oh, and Hampton is the one being indicted, Ensign is just fine, thank you very much.

Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum betrayed his professed family values when he tipped off his friend, former Sen. John Ensign, that a story about his extramarital affair was about to break, said Doug Hampton, husband of the woman with whom Ensign had been having the affair.

“If Santorum was true to his values, why didn’t he ask Ensign to step down and why hasn’t he been more forthright on his reasons for doing what he did?” Hampton said in an interview with the Sun on Friday. “If you are a family-values guy, a straight-shooter, there is no reason for you not to address poignantly, truthfully and honestly your position and what you did. End of discussion.”

Hampton, who was one of Ensign’s top aides at the time, said he asked Santorum in June 2009 for help in ending the affair Ensign was having with his wife.

Instead of offering help, Santorum forwarded to Ensign an email Hampton had written to Fox News to publicize the affair in a last-ditch effort to put an end to it.

Santorum’s move allowed Ensign to acknowledge the affair and issue a public apology before the media could break the story.

“I begged Rick to talk to me first,” Hampton said in his first public interview since Santorum’s surge in the GOP presidential primary race. “I told him, ‘You don’t understand what I’ve done to try and help this man understand what he has done. You’re a good friend, maybe you could go talk to him.’ ”

The incident has become more and more galling to Hampton as Santorum has become a front-runner in the presidential race. Coming within eight votes of winning Iowa, Santorum has established himself as a religious conservative with traditional family values.


VIDEO: Rachel Maddow vets what's left of the GOP candidates. Hey, someone has to!


Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Best vetting on these guys I've seen yet. Thank you as always, Rachel.

More backstory on Santorum and Ensign: Senate ethics committee: Rick Santorum tipped off John Ensign


Justice Department Launches Criminal Probe Into Deaths During CIA "Interrogations"


I'm glad to see there will be an investigation, but I have very low expectations. A.G. Holder's statement:

"Mr. Durham [Bush prosecutor] and his team reviewed a tremendous volume of information pertaining to the detainees. That review included both information and matters that had never previously been examined by the department. Mr. Durham has advised me of the results of his investigation, and I have accepted his recommendation to conduct a full criminal investigation regarding the death in custody of two individuals. Those investigations are ongoing... The Department has determined that an expanded criminal investigation of the remaining matters is not warranted."

Of course, there is no guarantee that charges will be brought. And further investigation into other cases? "Not warranted." No need, look forward, not backward... BushCo skates. I can't imagine why other "remaining matters" don't also deserve deeper probes.

In a way, it's reminiscent of the way the John Ensign matter was handled, and how the Senate dug up more than the Justice Department did, which caused DoJ to renew its own investigation. Come on, DoJ, you can do better.

There may be all kinds of reasons, both political and legal, why investigating the Bush Torture Corporation might cause problems for a lot of public officials, but breaking the law is wrong, as is setting the wrong precedent. We are a nation of laws, so let's abide by them.


here; That link includes one specific to only *Fayiz al-Kandari’s story here (very similar to Hicks’ in that he was sold for bounty).

Here are audio and video interviews with Lt. Col. Wingard, one by David Shuster, one by Ana Marie Cox, and more. My guest commentary at BuzzFlash is here.

Lt. Col. Barry Wingard is a military attorney who represents Fayiz Al-Kandari in the Military Commission process and in no way represents the opinions of his home state. When not on active duty, Colonel Wingard is a public defender in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

If you are inclined to help rectify these injustices: Twitterers, use the hashtag #FreeFayiz. We have organized a team to get these stories out. If you are interested in helping Fayiz out, e-mail me at The Political Carnival, address in sidebar to the right; or tweet me at @GottaLaff.

If you’d like to see other ways you can take action, go here and scroll down to the end of the article.

Then read Jane Mayer’s book The Dark Side. You’ll have a much greater understanding of why I post endlessly about this, and why I’m all over the CIA deception issues, too.

More of Fayiz’s story here, at


What's good for the Weiner should be good for the Boehner


There is so much outrage on the Internet Machine about the hypocrisy of forcing Anthony Weiner to resign, but not David Vitter, Tom Coburn (if his role in the John Ensign matter is as serious as it seems), John Ensign, etc.

But there has also been a rumor floating around about Speaker of the House John Boehner since 2010 that Paddy and I each posted about, a rumor that seemed to go unnoticed, even after many others also reported on it. Why is that? It can't be the name factor, since The Boehner would send just as many thrills up the collective media's legs as Weiner has.

Recently the story about Boehner's affairs are popping up on Twitter again, so what better opportunity for a re-post or two?

First, Paddy's post:

A blogger from liberal Web site The Daily Kos [Mike Stark] pierced through Boehner’s security detail at yesterday’s unveiling of his leadership policy “Pledge to America” to ask if he was sleeping with a lobbyist from the Printing Industries of America.

The congressman ignored the pesky blogger with a flip camera and kept moving to his fleet of black Suburbans.

The lobbyist who was named in the confrontation and then was contacted by the Daily Kos blogger Lisbeth Lyons denied the accusations. “As you can imagine, I was stunned by such a question,” Lyons said. “I found it to be highly insulting, particularly as a female political professional, as well as unfounded. Beyond that, I have no further comment on the matter.”

Insiders on Capitol Hill are buzzing about an upcoming New York Times exposé that will detail an alleged Boehner affair. Sources say the Times is looking for the right time to drop the story in October to sway the election, similar to how the Times reported during the 2008 presidential campaign on an alleged John McCain affair that supposedly had taken place many years before and that was flatly denied by the woman in question.

And now, an excerpt from my own post:

For more details, please visit Joe My God and Boy Culture. Here’s the teaser (no pun):

And finally, via the National Enquirer:

New Speaker of the House JOHN BOEHNER is embroiled in a bombshell sex scandal - involving at least two different women, The ENQUIRER has learned! [...] alleged affair that the 61-year-old married father of two had with pretty Washington lobbyist LISBETH LYONS. [...]

...with LEIGH LaMORA, a 46-year-old former press secretary to ex-Colorado Congressman JOEL HEFLEY.

So there you have it. I guess if there is no accompanying sexting or multiple graphic photos, it's just not titillating enough to motivate the press to, you know, investigate, or at least whip them into a frenzied, frothy mass of rabid circus foam.

But that won't stop many of us from asking about it. A lie is a lie. And after all, inquiring minds want to know.

H/t: @Dovescorner for the video


VIDEO ADDED: Rep. Anthony Weiner announces his resignation. It should have been David Vitter.


Via a CNN email alert, for the record:

Rep. Anthony Weiner announced today that he is resigning his seat in the House of Representatives after apologizing for "the distraction I have created."

The New York Democrat's wife, Huma Abedin, was not at his side. Weiner admitted he had carried on inappropriate relationships with several women online a week after first claiming that his Twitter account had been hacked, then saying that he had not sent illicit photos to those women.

Unfortunately, it's David Vitter who should have been standing there announcing his resignation, surrounded by a frothing, rabid media, getting heckled by idiots (speaking of distractions). Added: I'm hearing they were Howard Sterners. Again (they heckled his last presser, too).

That would be the same David Vitter who favors corporations over sexual assault victims; who wants to defund Planned Parenthood; who was subpoenaed by the D.C. Madam and who has the diaper fetish– maybe he and his buddy John Ensign should join Weiner. And let's not forget Tom Coburn.

H/t: @ReasonVsFear for finding recording, then uploading the video so quickly.