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Breaking: Senator Larry Craig Arrested, Pleads Guilty Following Incident in Airport Restroom

by Pamela Leavey

I find it rather astounding that this news is just coming out to the public: “Sen. Larry Craig (R-Idaho) was arrested in June at a Minnesota airport by a plainclothes police officer investigating lewd conduct complaints in a men’s public restroom, according to an arrest report obtained by Roll Call Monday afternoon.” Kudos to Roll Call for breaking this story. MSNBC now highlights this photo on their front page:

Craig was arrested in June, his trial was earlier this month. Was there some sort of coverup by Craig?

After he was arrested, Craig, who is married, was taken to the Airport Police Operations Center to be interviewed about the lewd conduct incident, according to the police report. At one point during the interview, Craig handed the plainclothes sergeant who arrested him a business card that identified him as a U.S. Senator and said, “What do you think about that?” the report states.

MSNBC reports that “Craig said in a statement issued by his office that he was not involved in any inappropriate conduct.”

At the time of this incident, I complained to the police that they were misconstruing my actions,” he said. “I should have had the advice of counsel in resolving this matter. In hindsight, I should not have pled guilty. I was trying to handle this matter myself quickly and expeditiously.”

Clearly this should have bene made public at the time of Craig’s arrest. MSNBC also notes that “last fall, Craig called allegations from a gay-rights activist that he’s had homosexual relationships “completely ridiculous.””

Mike Rogers, who bills himself as a gay activist blogger, published the allegations on his Web site, www.blogactive.com, in October 2006.

The WaPo is also reporting the story now, as well as other media outlets including CNN. No one is asking the question… Why is the public just finding out about this?

ArchPundit points to a transcript of “Larry Craig on naughtiness and nastiness,” from Meet The Press, January 24, 1999:

MR. RUSSERT: Larry Craig, would you want the last word from the Senate be an acquittal of the president and no censure?

SEN. CRAIG: Well, I don’t know where the Senate’s going to be on that issue of an up or down vote on impeachment, but I will tell you that the Senate certainly can bring about a censure reslution and it’s a slap on the wrist. It’s a, “Bad boy, Bill Clinton. You’re a naughty boy.”

The blogosphere is on fire with news of Craig’s arrest and sentencing, with the news upstaging Gonzales’ resignation this morning. Here’s a roundup of the discussion via Memeorandum at: Newshoggers, Clayton Cramer’s Blog, Pam Spaulding weighs in on AmericaBlog, Seeing The Forest, The Jawa Report, Pottersville, and Blue Oregon.

UPDATE: On The Politico, Jonathan Martin points out that Senator Craig is “is one of Mitt Romney’s top backers in the Senate,” and a “clip of Craig praising Romney was until just moments ago available on Romney’s YouTube channel, but is now listed as “a private video.””

UPDATE 2: There is some controversy here in the comments over whether Senator Craig is Mormon or not. His bio on Congress.org lists him as Methodist.

RELATED POSTS:

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  • Will Craig Resign? Press Conference at 4:30 p.m. EDT
  • Senator “Wide Stance”
  • Defiant… Senator Craig: ‘I am not gay’
  • Bad Fiction Writers Go To Congress
  • 80 Responses to “Breaking: Senator Larry Craig Arrested, Pleads Guilty Following Incident in Airport Restroom”

    1. If only there were more mormons like Harry Reid, then there wouldn’t be such a backlash about this situation. But when the country is bombarded with “ultra-conservative” mormons who have regular “revelations of convenience”, it makes a lot of us wary about the group as a whole, particularly the politisizing and power-seeking that the mormon church does in seemingly all walks of life. Not much separation there.
      I have met wonderful individual mormons, but the “group think” brainwashing that occurs in the church is truly scary. It makes no sense that there isn’t a more balanced political view of the world within the ranks of the church.
      I wonder how Harry Reid ever survived in that church.

    2. I have checked a couple of Internet sites and clearly Sen. Larry Craig is Methodist — he is not and never was a Mormon.

      You only discredit your cause when you don’t get your facts staight.

      I think those who vitriolically try to pin membership in the Mormon Church on him are clearly showing their bigotry and hatred against Mormons.

      This kind of smearing be quickly denounced if directed at Jews or Muslims. Is there a double standard when it comes to Mormons?

      Lets face it: There are a lot of Mormon voters in Idaho. It’s not surprising that Sen. Craig visited a Mormon church from time to time.

      I know of Democrat Catholic politicians who have courted Jewish voters in the same way. Visiting a synagogue does not mean they are Jewish.

      I agree that Sen. Craig is a hypocrit. There have been persistent rumours about him being gay for years. I doubt that these are totally baseless. And the more vehemently he denies the more suspicious I get….

    3. Who among you here has not sinned let him cast the first stone.

      We all think were perfect. If you think you are! try feeding a multitude with a piece of bread or maybe try walking on water.

      I am a Mormon, and I don’t judge Sen Craig of his actions, but he should know by now that ” you shall reap what you sow “.

      There are good and bad people in both the Methodist and the Mormon church, that’s why we all go to church, to be reminded, to repent and to renew our covenants with God.

    4. What is Sad is not that Senator Craig has or has not done any of this, nor that he is or is not a hypocrite; but that the Government and Police consider that They have to do anything about this at all, when precious Time and Money could better be spent on Real Crime and Real Problems…

      I feel as safe and secure now as anyone could have felt living under the KGB or the GESTAPO…

    5. so…as christians….mormon or not, why do you have to argue about it. be respectful of other peoples beliefs and just live you’re own.

    6. and if the mormon religion is wrong or not. It teaches very high morals and is very family oriented. I am not mormon, but have researched the religion and met many mormons and they are fine people.

    7. The question should never be “What religion is he?” But should be “Has this man shown qualities that I want representing me in my government?”

      My current answer is no. This is simply due to how he handled himself while being questioned. He did not exhibit those qualities.

    8. Reading this useless banter has yet once again proven to me the truth of the (now old) adage, “Arguing on the Internet is like running in the Special Olympics: even if you win, you’ll still look like a retard.”

    9. I came to this site to see if the guy espoused ANY religion, since he seems 100% not what he is in reality. Imagine the conflict of being gay, and voting against every gay bill put before him? Perhaps he’s just insane? Multiple personalities? I do feel very sorry for that clueless wife, keeping the stiff upper lip as she listens to his lies unravel.

      Lots of good points have been made here.

      A friend of mine (Tracy Gardner)has a film he wrote opening in California, Florida, Idaho, Utah and a few limited places September 14. It’s called “Return With Honor-A Missionary Homecoming” and it deals with issues expressed here. I got to see a screener copy, and, I’m telling you, it’s not your typical Mormon/Christian film. It shows all the warts, and makes you think. It’s one every Jew, Muslim, and Agnostic should see, too. I hope it does so well in it’s limited engagement that it goes to theaters all over the USA, because, judging from this site, we all sure need it.

    10. Sybil

      “judging from this site”

      FYI, the people commenting here about Craig’s religion are not regulars here, in fact they all just showed up and starting spouting about whether or not Craig is a Mormon or a Methodist.

      Thanks for the info about the film.

    11. Geotopia writes: “Gary Koinm’s comments are interesting. Vindictive and an obvious lashout of the conservatives on the surface, it’s actually a valid indictment of Liberals. You see, Mr. Craig (who’s not a Mormon BTW), is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. He’s a Republican in Name only. In his actual mind and heart, he obviously believes much differently than he professes in his politics.”

      That may be the funniest thing I’ve read yet in this entire sordid affair. A “wolf in sheep’s clothing”? So after 26 years of carrying out the conservative agenda, now conservatives are not only throwing Senator Craig under the bus, but they’re also claiming “he was never one of us anyway”? Outstanding.

      “Watch how quickly the Conservatives will disavow this goon. He doesn’t hold the principals that guide conservatives and having been discovered doesn’t deserve to number himself among their ranks.”

      Yeah, despite being feted with every conservative award by every conservative organization out there over the past 26 years. Now, suddenly, he’s “not one of us.”

      “I leave this question with you, is he a conservative or liberal?”

      He’s a conservative, my friend, no matter how much you try to distance yourself.

      “In affiliations and his speech, he may have appeared conservative, but in his personal conduct, he’s obvious liberal (at least sexually speaking).”

      LOL. I’d be willing to bet dollars to donuts that if you polled the voting and political preferences of public bathroom sex perverts, they are overwhelmingly conservative Republicans. *Guaranteed.*

    12. Normally, I’d agree that taking down the hate posts is a good idea. But here, we seem to have opened the festering wound that no one really seems to be dealing with this year, and so the Klannish anti-Mormonism displayed here is highly instructive.

      Kudos to Pamela for having the courage to keep them up, rather than simply doing the PC thing and suppressing them.

      Some thoughts: First, the question has been raised, is anti-Mormon bigotry being posted in this thread?

      Yes. Sad to say. I grew up around Mormons, and was even a Mormon cub scout, and the love/hate relationship between Mormons and their neighbors in the West is well-known and equally unarticulated. It is the Dirty Secret of the American West.

      The problem is writ deeply into American history, and any cursory glance at the WHY of the Mormon migration to “Deseret” and the Great Salt Lake will tell you that this is an old and deep problem. Seen from their point of view, a deep-seated fear and paranoia about their “Christian” neighbors is justifiable, given the history.

      Right now “September Morn” is playing in theaters, retelling the story of the Mountain Meadows Massacre. I agree that the story needs to be told. Mormons ain’t all saints. But the timing and the intent seems unmistakable.

      Make no mistake: I think Mitt Romney is a grade-A liar, skunk and asshole who will say or do anything to get elected, and I wouldn’t hire him to watch my DOG for an hour. But that comes of his astonishing flip-flops, and his blatant law-breaking to become a Massachusetts “resident” prior to his successful run for governor. NOT because of his Mormonism, which undoubtedly would condemn his actions.

      But the release of September Morn to smear ALL Mormons just to get Romney seems astonishingly stoooopid and vile.

      SO: can you characterize a religion via one of its adherents? And, worse, can you claim a non-adherent to be an adherent JUST to bash the religion? Evidently yes, and I offer the case of Osama bin Laden as an alternate example.

      Personally, NO. Otherwise, Christianity could be neatly characterized by Judas (no matter how ofttimes apt the characterization, it’s still specious).

      But, for those NOT from hyper-Red-state Idaho, I offer this additional bit of orientation: “He’s a Republican in Name only. In his actual mind and heart, he obviously believes much differently than he professes in his politics.”(from Geotopia above)

      The Idaho RINO hunt was put online last year by Howie Rich’s Idaho agent Laird Maxwell (since moved to Arizona) with his own “RINO” website HERE

      Googling Idaho RINO will turn up a gazillion links (OK, about 121,000) to the favorite sport of a homogenous batch of Right wing nuts who don’t have any Democrats or Liberals to bash, so, instead, they eat their own.

      Mix Idaho Red-State bigotry with anti-Mormon bigotry and you’ve got … well, a big chunk of this thread.

      Which brings us back to Mormons and anti-Mormon bigotry. I was raised by a devout Christian (by devout, I mean that everything was either Jesus’ fault, Jesus’ forgiveness, or was rationalized via Jesus) who maintained an uneasy truce with Mormons. On the one hand, she went in for their annual food bulk buys. On the other hand, privately, she cautioned that they were dangerous heretics.

      But, since I don’t have a dog in this fight, I don’t find the mythology of either side any stranger or bizarre than the other. So, we have to judge people by what they DO.

      And, in a half-century of dealing with Mormons, I generally find them to be decent, law-abiding and caring neighbors.

      This is the substrate of the 2008 GOP nomination race, and the sorts of bigoted, Klannish comments seen here are little different from those made in the 1920s about Catholics, or those being made about Muslims in 2007. It’s time to face the deep-seated anti-Mormon bigotry squarely, and say IT’S WRONG.

      If they want to believe in the Easter Bunny, that’s their affair, and the First Amendment gives them that freedom. So let’s acknowledge that anti-Mormon bigotry is as wrong as any other sort. And let’s add anti-Muslim bigotry while we’re at it.

      Bigotry in the name of “Jesus” is still bigotry. Just ask the Ku Klux Klan.

      “By their fruits ye shall know them,” is a statement that Christians, Mormons and Muslims all have in their sacred writ, and that’s still a good standard by which to judge.

      Attacking Craig as a RINO or a Mormon only highlights the bigot making the attack. It says nothing about Senator Craig or his own self-made hell.

    13. Mormon bred and raised and residing in Utah, I can honestly say that I’ve seen the leadership of the Mormon Church squeeze Mormon politicans for votes on only rare occasions. The most overt manifestation of this is a reading from the pulpit of a “statement from The First Presidency”. On the local scene, their efforts, while rare, are universally successful. This “participation in the political process” is deemed offensive by the one side and innocuous by the other. Thus the divide referenced by Hart.

    14. Jinger (28) is an insecure idiot with a chip on his shoulder and certainly works a blue collar job.
      Craig is Methodist and contributes to my Methodist congretion, dorks!

      The Mormorn religion holds no record for more saints or sinnners than other religion, so why beat them up so much? What is everyone so afraid of? What religion is Hillary Clinton? John McCain? Mike Huckabee?

      Give the people of Idaho some credit – mostly Mormon and certainly conservative, they elected one of the great democratic senators of our time – Frank Church – and reelected him 3 times. They elected the man – his religion was secondary. And guess what – he was not MORMON.

      Where are you bigots from? The 1950’s? Wake up – it is 2007.

      Romney saved the SLC Olympics. Massachsetts – a democratic bastion – elected the guy. I am going to give the guy a chance before I write him off.

    15. Uh, excuse me, I was here and I would never say that Romney “saved the Olympics”. Whoever the Mormon Church chose to do the same thing for them (and there are many who could have been picked) would have had the same results. Romney got the pick solely because there are those who wanted to see that on his resume, and that is reason enough to write him off.

    16. The Church of Jesus Christ (LDS) is often misunderstood . . Some accuse the Church of not believing in Christ and, therefore, not being a Christian religion . . http://mormonsarechristian.blogspot.com/ helps to clarify such misconceptions by examining early (First Century) Christianity’s understanding of baptism, the Godhead, the deity of Jesus Christ and His Atonement. The Church of Jesus Christ (LDS) adheres to Early Christian theology more closely than other Christian denominations.

    17. Bot: I think your insights are better served on another thread. The point of this conversation has been that it is NOT a conversation about Mormonism.

    18. What a bunch of ding bats.
      Senator Larry Craig is not Mormon. What’s wrong with you idiots…. is not seeing a Conservative Methodist fall pleasing enough. Why are you so hell bent on sticking it to Mormons?

    19. Darrell, (in response to post 65)
      Come on now what is this crap about padding resumes… How silly. Talk about padding… look at some of the other canidates, Obama has extra padding. If we went by Legitimate Resumes we would have somebody like Dick Cheney as President or someone like that…and we know that aint going to happen.

      Besides you can thank the Left for creating the Olympic scandal because there really was no scandal at least not any worse than any other Olympic scandal… It was only because the Mormon factor that it became a scandal. And so in around about way the Left helped pad Romney’s Resume.. Because Romney saved us from a scandal that didn’t exist. It was again the hatred of Mormons that drove the scandal story.

    20. Troll alert. (As if “Mike Moore” wasn’t enough of a giveaway.)

    21. Mike Moore aka John

      Thank you for sharing. Most of the folks commenting here have come from one website and from what I can see it’s not a liberal website at all. So before you judge what the left has done, ask yourself what conservatives arguing over who’s religion is better have done.

      This conversation was never about Craig’s religion – Mormon or Methodist until someone dropped the Mormon bombshell in the comments.

    22. You guys don’t get the joke? of course Mike Moore…Angry White Men. You totally missed the point. Of course My name isn’t Mike Moore.

    23. I just do not understand why we allow such double standards in our party. I don’t think we should be bashing anyone. Why do we say: “Bashing or attacking members of The Democratic Daily or Democratic leaders in office or candidates will not be tolerated.” That infers we can bash any other parties leaders and frankly I am sick of it. We need to be more about the business of defending America and doing constructive work to celebrate successes and solve problems in this great country.

      We need to look at facts before we decide on courses of action. I am sick of emotional decisions when we need to be objective too.

      I can not stand the fact that our current Congress is the worst I have ever seen and it is our Party’s fault. We have become negative and too political. What happened to the Democratic Party of Truman and Kennedy?

      Also Leave Larry Craig alone. He is a Methodist..so what!? If he is Gay so what? Good grief, can’t a person make a mistake and be forgiven???

      Remember one thing..we are Americans..not Democrats, Republicans, or whatever. Let’s behave like it, there is good work to do!

    24. Jeff Williams

      Thank you. You make some good points. The comments policy is supposed to infer that we don’t allow intercine party squabbling, but yes, the negativity is way our of hand all the way around these days. And yes there is good work to do. We try to focus on that here as much as possible.

    25. Jeff Williams:

      There is right, and there is wrong.

      Larry Craig is wrong. He’s wrong ten ways to Sunday, so don’t try to murk the waters up.

      (This is what you get when you’ve got a country run by lawyers: an Aristophanes play, specifically, ‘The Frogs’).

      Somehow, in all of this, you’ve decided that we’re wrong, you’re right, and we’re the ones running the long Mormon bash-and-defend portion of this threat. No regular poster here has ever made an issue of Methodism or Mormonism, other than to say, they don’t have anything to do with the price of beans.

      And yes, “John,” I got your joke. It just wasn’t funny. It started out trying to be witty, but failed by 50%.

      Now: sorry that we can’t be sweetness and light all the time, but ’tain’t a’gonna happen. Mostly because we live in a world in which polite discourse is a sort of lost art.

      Most people here tend to respond IN KIND to comments. If they’re “Yew LIBurULz are all worng. Hyuck, hyuck,” we don’t bother with the napkin rings and the shrimp forks.

      So, let’s all get along, OK? It looks like Larry Craig is going to be with us for a long, long time yet to come.

    26. Hart

      It does look like Larry is reconsidering his resignation. :roll:

    27. That was what I meant by “a long, long time yet to come.” 😯 😯 😯

    28. After all this time, I still haven’t heard anyone explore the facts to see if the Senator was traveling!? If there is no record of him arriving or preparing to depart on any flight to/from that airport then what was he doing there? –Instant guilty!

    29. A few weeks ago a picture of the Minneapolis restroom was shown where this Crag incident alledgedly happened. Did you notice the two stalls had the cammodes close together? (The cammodes were not in the center of the stalls). If a man has a wide stance, and if it is his habit, he could easily shove his foot into the next stall without thinking about it. And it isn’t too far of a reach to see his left hand with the wedding band.

      I have been in restrooms where this has been the same exact placement of cammodes in the stalls. I think he should be given the benefit of the doubt.

      It is not uncommon to admit to something when you want it to be over with. M-a-n-y travelers have paid traffic fines so as to avoid coming back to the part of the country they received a traffic violation and they believed they were innocent. They just want it to be over with. I am sickened by the idea of these lewd acts and I wouldn’t be tolerate of such an act, but there are some intelligent people without the sense of how hey handle themselves, even if it is innocent.

    30. Parse it any way you will. If he was innocent, he had every opportunity to consult with a lawyer in the nearly two months that he took to plead guilty. Then he said that it was because the Idaho Statesman was investigating him. Then he said he was going to resign. Then he said he wouldn’t if the judge let him withdraw his guilty plea to make the same lame argument YOU just made. Then he said he wasn’t going to resign at all.

      Am I leaving anything out?

      Oh, yes. There’s the little matter of his lying phone message, left on the wrong phone machine, where the explains that it’s his intention to weasel, to lie and to prevaricate.

      Whether or not Larry was caught in the men’s room (and I have no doubt that he was) he has shown himself to be a liar extraordinaire, or are you going to try and explain that one away, too?

      Come on. Even Larry Craig doesn’t believe what Larry Craig says. Why do you?

      Denial isn’t just a river in Africa.