Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Turning Blue?

The effects of last Friday’s resignation by U.S. Representative Mark Foley (R-FL) over inappropriate emails he sent to teenage male congressional pages reverberated through not only Capitol Hill but congressional campaigns nationwide.

Looking to take back the House (they need 15 seats for a majority), many Democratic candidates have publicly asked their Republican opponents to join them in a call for Speaker of the House Dennis J. Hastert’s resignation. Hastert was allegedly told about the emails last year, yet failed to investigate the complaint.

The scandal had yet another Illinois connection—a number of people have also called for the resignation Representative John M. Shimkus (IL-19), chairman of the House panel that oversees the page program.

With just 5 weeks left until the election, Democratic candidates have used the scandal as an opportunity to undermine the values-focused campaign strategy of the Republican Party, putting the GOP members on the defensive. Many have openly denounced Foley and/or returned his campaign contributions, along with canceling major fundraising events this week.

Will this new development be enough to turn 15 seats blue?


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