DNC parrots claim Rove pressured Foley to stay

Published: Thursday October 12, 2006

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Democrats are touting a report in today's New Republic that claims presidential adviser Karl Rove and Congressman Tom Reynolds (R-NY) both pressured disgraced Representative Tom Foley (R-FL) into remaining in office, RAW STORY has learned.

In a release issued today, the Democratic National Committee touts the report as evidence of "Republican efforts to cover-up this scandal."

The release, in its entirety, follows:


As Republican candidates run in droves from Republican Congressman Tom Reynolds and the rest of the House Republican leaders who covered up the Mark Foley scandal, White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove raised eyebrows by agreeing to step in for Republican Senator John McCain at two Buffalo fundraisers next Friday. It turns out this isn’t the first time Rove and Reynolds have worked together on the Mark Foley matter.

A new report in the New Republic Online reveals that, as Foley was considering not seeking reelection this year, Karl Rove intervened and strong-armed Foley into running again. According to the report, “Foley said he was being pressured by ‘the White House and Rove gang,’ who insisted that Foley run. If he didn't, Foley was told, it might impact his lobbying career.” Foley reportedly told associates that, “the White House made it very clear I have to run," and promised that serving for two more years would "enhance his success" as a lobbyist. [New Republic Online, 10/12/06]

The fact that Karl Rove, President Bush’s chief political advisor, and Tom Reynolds teamed up to convince Mark Foley to run for Congress—even though Reynolds knew about Foley’s inappropriate emails with teenaged boys—raises serious new questions about Republican efforts to cover up this scandal. Did Reynolds alert Rove to Foley’s emails before asking Rove to put on the pressure? Did Rove join in the House Republican leadership’s cover up of the scandal? Was anyone else at the White House aware of Foley’s inappropriate contact with minors? Now that the entire country knows Tom Reynolds and the House Republican leadership failed these children, why is Rove going to Buffalo to bail him out?

“Instead of trying to save Tom Reynolds’ political career, Karl Rove should explain whether he or anyone else at the White House knew about the scandal when he pressured Mark Foley into running again,” said Democratic National Committee Spokesman Damien LaVera.

“What Republicans like Tom Reynolds and Karl Rove don't seem to understand is that this is about children, not politics. People are looking at this as concerned parents, not as Republicans or Democrats. They don’t want more finger pointing, they want real leaders who will take responsibility for their actions and stop putting politics ahead of the safety of our children. Democrats are offering a new direction for America that includes a return to honesty, accountability and ethics in Washington.”