That Was Then, Foley Is Now

10/09/2006 04:54 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

People: stop defending Studds. Stop even talking about Studds. Forget the dude ever existed. If they bring up Studds, talk about Foley, because he is the one who was caught just a week ago trying to fondle congressional pages while under the knowing eyes of the Republican House leadership.

Don't let them change the conversation. We're not voting in November for candidates in 1983; we're voting for our current polititcal leaders, and this scandal is one more dramatic illustration of their failure.

That's why Republicans are trying to blame Clinton, Studds, George Soros, the pages themselves -- anything to introduce ambiguity, and put Democrats on the defensive. It's clever judo, and they're good at it. But don't fall for it. Stay on the offensive. Now we're hearing "hindsight is always 20/20." More chaff, obviously. The Republicans' chief fundraiser, fully aware of Foley's misconduct, asked Foley to run again. You don't need hindsight to see how that's a mistake.

It's a scandal, and a cover-up: Republicans knew, and played politics with children entrusted to the care of the congress. It's a point that needs to be hammered home, as a note I got from a friend pointed out:

It's one more example of Republicans thinking the American public can be easily kept in the dark. They think they can preside over pedophile scandals and a failing war and no one will notice. It's the Democrats job to remind voters that they're smarter than that, and that Democrats will be the party that gives it to them straight. Their slogan should be something along the lines of "The truth -- because you deserve to know."