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Hullabaloo


Saturday, May 28, 2011

 
Oklahoma Crude

by digby

I have my doubts as to whether the Justice Department will actually pursue the Ensign charges. After all, they already have John Edwards to kick around and it doesn't seem likely that they'll make a habit of this sort of case. Too many glass homes could be broken. But the main reason I doubt it will go anywhere is that it is connected to that freaky religio-political cult The Family and for reasons that have never been adequately explained, that just seems to be an off-limits topic, despite the fact that it is weird beyond weird.

Still, it might just be having an effect on the career of one particularly powerful Republican and I couldn't be happier to see him hobbled. The illusion that he's some sort of fair dealer is very dangerous in a system where Democrats are all too eager to latch on to anyone who can give them cover to go along with the conservative wrecking crew.
Sen. Tom Coburn roundly dismissed the bombshell ethics report involving former Sen. John Ensign's (R-Nev.) sex scandal, which portrayed the Oklahoma Republican as an intermediary trying to negotiate a seven-figure settlement between Ensign and his mistress's husband.
"That's a totally inaccurate characterization of what happened," Coburn said on a taped interview of C-SPAN's "Newsmakers," which is set to air Sunday. "What the story you hear is not an accurate reflection of what happened."

[...]

Coburn and Ensign lived together at a Christian townhouse on Capitol Hill in Feb. 2008 when Doug Hampton — just two months after Ensign’s extramarital affair with his wife Cindy Hampton began — asked Coburn to help bring the relationship to an end. Coburn was unsuccessful in at least two attempts to do so.
[...]
In the C-SPAN interview, Coburn said he simply passed along the message to Ensign. He also said the Ethics Committee has not contacted him since he testified before the panel earlier this year -- and he had no regrets about his role in the episode, saying he would do "exactly" the same thing again.

"We put two families back together with multiple children -- both marriages are stable right now," Coburn said. "I'm proud of what I did and the way I did it. There's nothing unethical about what I did."

Cindy Hampton, however, has recently filed for divorce, the ethics report said, while the Justice Department indicted Doug Hampton for breaking federal lobbying restrictions in the wake of the Ensign scandal.

One of the most bewildering questions in recent years is how Tom Coburn came to be considered some sort of wise man and statesman who can be counted upon for good advice and counsel. President Obama always talking about him as if he were some special GOP sage who had real insights to offer.

This guy:

The Republican Senate candidate in Oklahoma warns of "rampant" lesbianism in some schools in the state in a tape released Monday by his Democratic opponent.

The remark by Republican Tom Coburn drew a skeptical response from state educators.

"I don't believe that," said Keith Ballard, executive director of the Oklahoma State School Boards Association. He said the group's attorneys "haven't said anything to me about that."

In the tape released by the campaign of Brad Carson, the Democratic candidate, Coburn says a campaign worker from Coalgate told him that "lesbianism is so rampant in some of the schools in southeast Oklahoma that they'll only let one girl go to the bathroom. Now think about it. Think about that issue. How is it that that's happened to us?"

Joe McCulley, school superintendent in Coalgate, chuckled when asked about Coburn's remark.

"He knows something I don't know. We have not identified anything like that. We have not had to deal with any issues on that subject - ever," McCulley said.

I know the standards have been drastically lowered, but this person is a full-fledged nut.

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