The Daily Show dug into its archives Monday night to find examples of leaders on both sides of the aisle that demurred from sexual harassment investigations when their own party’s reputation was at stake.
House Minority Leader John Boehner has called for an investigation into Democratic leaders that knew about allegations of sexual harassment by former Rep. Eric Massa. Jon Stewart wants to know why Boehner was so eager to forgo investigations when it was a member of his own party, Rep. Mark Foley, that was accused of harassment.
“There are a lot of people, including some of the leaders on the Democrat [sic] side, who were in fact informed of this. They should suffer the consequences,” Boehner demanded last week.
“Of course, Boehner’s ethical stand would carry slightly more weight if he had not just a few years prior expressed the exact opposite sentiment when asked if Republican then-Speaker Denny Hastert should face consequences for covering up Congressman Mark Foley’s sex messaging pages scandal,” noted Stewart.
Boehner was quick to defend Hastert as the scandal broke. “It’s pretty clear to me the Speaker had no knowledge of these instant messages,” he said.
“Of course, Hastert was well aware of Foley’s sexually charged emails and said nothing,” observed Stewart.
But Democrats are also guilty of hypocrisy, according to The Daily Show. At the time of the Foley scandal, Nancy Pelosi called for House Republicans to face consequences.
“They didn’t even know it was wrong to ignore the repulsive behavior of one of their members. A member of Congress, who should be held to a higher ethical standard,” said Pelosi.
Pelosi wasn’t so quick to indict members of her own party when it came to the Massa scandal. “Of course, Pelosi’s ethical stand would carry slightly more weight if she had not just a few years later, last week, expressed a different sentiment when dealing with Congressman Grabass J. Ticklington,” said Stewart.
“There had a been a rumor but just that. No former notification to our office… they did not report to me because you know what? This is rumor city,” Pelosi said of the Massa scandal last week.
“Come on, what am I supposed to do? Look into it? I’ve got bills to water down and then not pass,” mocked Stewart.
This video is from Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, broadcast March 15, 2010.