Revealed: GOP groups got thousands from disgraced ex-congressman caught in underage sext scandal
A man hiding money in his suit (

Republican Rep. Mark Foley of Florida resigned from Congress in 2006 amid an explosive sex scandal involving an underage congressional page.

But the former congressman is still funding Republican election efforts — as well as charities — in the Sunshine State, using surplus campaign cash.

Foley filed a new report with the Federal Election Commission this week revealing that his political group, Friends of Mark Foley for Congress, poured out about $86,000 late last year to nonpartisan charities, including Habitat for Humanity, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and the Richard David Kahn Melanoma Foundation.

However, he also cut a $10,000 check to the Republican Party of Palm Beach County.

The filing also shows that Friends of Mark Foley for Congress contributed $250 to the Campaign to Elect Tom Ramiccio for Boynton Beach Council. Ramiccio once served as the mayor and city commissioner of Lake Worth, Florida, and ran the local Chamber of Commerce there. He was once accused by the Palm Beach Post of pocketing money from that organization, which he denied and called a defamatory accusation.

Foley was forced to step down from Congress following the revelation of sexually explicit messages he sent to underage congressional pages. He was investigated by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement over the matter, but never charged with any sex offenses.

Despite the scandal, some Republican groups in Florida continue to honor him.

Foley, whose campaign committee technically remains open and active, has steadily divested of surplus campaign cash — it once topped more than $1 million — during the past decade. It now has less than $84,000 in reserve.

Last year, Business Insider found that Foley cut a similar check to the Palm Beach GOP — at the same time Republican lawmakers in the state were railing against "grooming" and moving to pass the controversial "Don't Say Gay" bill, which effectively prohibits any mention of sexual orientation or gender identity, even outside a sexual context, to most grade schoolers.

Several congressional and state representatives and candidates also received money directly from Foley's political group; some kept the money, but a few, such as Rep. Brian Mast of Florida and congressional candidate Rusty Roberts, declined it.

Foley told NBC LX's Noah Pransky in 2020 that he was going to close his congressional committee, but to date, has not followed through on that pledge.