Senator John Ensign (R-NV) had an affair with a campaign staffer while he was separated from this wife. That makes John Ensign look like a high schooler compared to BarneyFrank’s. Comparing John Ensign’s virtues to Barney Frank’s demonstrates all that is wrong with Washington politics and the Democrat party.
Ensign was separated from his wife, Darlene, during a portion of the time the affair lasted. The staffer, Cindy Hampton was married. Both Cindy Hampton and her husband Doug Hampton, worked for Ensign: Doug as manager of Ensign’s personal Senate office and Cindy for his reelection committee, the Ensign Battle Born PAC, as well as Treasurer of several other committees for Ensign’s reelection. Both left Ensign’s employment in April 2008. The affair began in December 2007 and lasted until August 2008.
Reports are that the Ensigns were separated from April to July 2008.
The creepiest part about this saga is that the Hamptons and the Ensigns were close and long-time “couple” friends. Doug Hampton seems to place only blame only on Ensign:
…[he] ruined our lives and careers and left my family in shambles. We have lost significant income, suffered indescribable pain and emotional suffering.” He said that he had tried to hire lawyers to obtain “restitution” from Ensign.
The Ensigns have been through therapy and they say they love each other. They say they have put their marriage back together. Ensign has since resigned his leadership position as chair of the Republican Policy Committee. There’s more to the story and you can read it here.
The Washington Times’ Wesley Pruden had an opinion piece up last week and he made some excellent points (reformatted for emphasis):
Congressional Democrats are more likely to grant a pass for naughty conduct than Republicans. This is not necessarily driven by political ideology.
Republicans are no less likely to fall to temptation, but are more likely to understand that hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue.
Republicans generally pay a dearer price to their constituents.
Newt Gingrich of Georgia and Robert Livingston of Louisiana each had to give up the position of Speaker of the House when caught in embarrassing indiscretions. When Rep. Barney Frank got caught allowing his live-in male lover to run a whorehouse in their apartment, the House censured him (though calling it a “reprimand”) and his constituents in starchy Massachusetts continued to return him to Washington by wide margins.
Comparing John Ensign’s virtues to Barney Franks’, who the Democrats let get by with a “reprimand,” is laughable, but certainly no joke. Democrats stand in the tsunami of their fellow Democrat’s involvement with the housing crises and there, riding the highest tide, is Barney Frank – with not one Democrat showing an ounce of virtue in the scandal that began bringing America down. It’s not enough that Franks and his boyfriend could turn their own neighborhood into a red-light district, but Franks’ own cuddly relationship with Fannie Mae exec, Herb Moses was barely reported in the mainstream media. It doesn’t get any more disgusting than that.
Remember when Barney jumped out ahead of everyone and said it was open season on Sarah Palin and her family was fair game because Palin “made an issue of her family.” That worked because the media also wanted to knock the Palins to their knees. But they didn’t want the same for Barney Frank. Don’t you think when a house of ill repute is being operated out of your own home and you are a U.S. Congressman, the press should care?
I appreciate that Senator Ensign gave up his leadership role in the wake of this “scandal.”
I wish Democrats would offer to sacrifice for the good of the country when they are “caught,” or at least, I wish Democrat leadership would demand such sacrifice. But such virtue is a distant memory from another time, another era.