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Republican Moral Values: Public Corruption Is Less Serious Than Private Infidelity

A twisted window onto Republican Party moral values was opened yesterday, as the two headlines appeared side by side in the Google News feed:

michael grimm Vance McAllisterOn the one hand we have Rep. Grimm Charged With Tax Fraud, Says He Won’t Quit, and on the other we have Kissing Congressman Won’t Seek Re-election.

Vance McAllister, Republican U.S. Representative from Louisiana, announced that he will not seek re-election to his seat in Congress. Why? He was seen kissing someone other than his wife.

At about the same time, Michael Grimm, Republican U.S. Representative from New York, declared that not only would he try to hold on to his seat in Congress, but that he intends to attempt to regain a seat on the House Committee on Financial Services. Congressman Grimm has been indicted on 20 counts of engaging in fraudulent financial practices, after an investigation that began as an inquiry into Grimm’s highly irregular campaign finance practices.

“I know I’m a moral man, a man of integrity,” Grimm said yesterday.

That’s the Republican idea of morality for you.

7 thoughts on “Republican Moral Values: Public Corruption Is Less Serious Than Private Infidelity”

  1. Stephen Kent Gray says:

    Interesting. I will watch the race in particular. I will watch both races and remember to keep an eye on developments.

    District 11:
    Michael Grimm (R/C/IP)* – (Campaign Site)
    Domenic Recchia (D/WF) – NYC Councilman, Ex-Community School Board Member & Attorney
    Erick Salgado (D) – Minister & ’13 NYC Mayor Candidate
    Hank Bardel (Green) – Retired City Parks Department Supervisor & Frequent Candidate

    District 5:
    [ Vance McAllister (R)* – Retiring in 2014. ]
    Harris Brown (R) – Businessman, Ex-Tensas Basin Levee District Board President & ’11 State Sen. Candidate
    Clyde Holloway (R) – State PSC Member, Ex-Congressman, Nurseryman, ’13 Candidate & ’03 Lt. Gov. Candidate
    Robert Johnson (D) – State Rep., Attorney & ’13 Candidate
    Jay Morris (R) – State Rep., Attorney, Ex-Congressional Aide & ’13 Candidate
    Neil Riser (R) – State Sen., Funeral Home Owner & ’13 Candidate
    Ed Tarpley (R) – Ex-Grant Parish District Attorney & ’95 Atty. Gen. Candidate
    Mike Walsworth (R) – State Sen. & Ex-State Rep.
    Marcus Hunter (D) – State Rep., Attorney & ’13 Candidate
    Jamie Mayo (D) – Monroe Mayor, Businessman & ’13 Candidate
    Jacques Roy (D) – Alexandria Mayor & Attorney
    Henry Herford Jr. (Libertarian) – Farmer, Teacher, Ex-GOP State Committeeman & ’13 Candidate

    Only two declared candidates in the Louisiana race so far though.

    Ed Tarpley (R) – Ex-Grant Parish District Attorney & ’95 Atty. Gen. Candidate
    Henry Herford Jr. (Libertarian) – Farmer, Teacher, Ex-GOP State Committeeman & ’13 Candidate

  2. Dave says:

    Peregrin, integrity is important public and private. The distinction between the two example congresscritters above probably has more to do with New York vs. Louisiana than anything else.

    1. Peregrin Wood says:

      I agree, Dave, that integrity is important whether it’s public or private. However, private integrity is important for private matters, and public integrity is important for public matters.

      I don’t see what a private infidelity by Vance McAllister in his marriage has to do with his ability to do the job of U.S. Representative. Do we elect people to go to Washington D.C. and be sexually faithful?

      In the case of Michael Grimm, however, his lack of integrity has to do with his ability to do his job. He has been working on the House Finance Committee, and his abuses and alleged criminality were financial in nature.

      But which one is relinquishing his office? That’s where the skewed morality lies..

      1. Stephen Kent Gray says:

        PW, the issue was that he was elected on a “family values” platform. He is one of those guy who talks about family values all the time. It showed his platform was bankrupt given he didn’t live by family values.

  3. Bill says:

    The distinction between the two seats has more to do with electoral demographics than anything else. McAllister’s district is solidly blood red, so House Republicans aren’t afraid to push him out before he embarrasses them further; no Democrat is going to win that seat. On the other hand, Grimm’s district is purple, verging on light blue, with the very real possibility that a Democrat could win it. Grimm could get caught on tape eating a baby with fava beans and a nice chianti and Republican leadership would still hold their noses and support him 100%. Situational ethics.

    1. Stephen Kent Gray says:

      Louisiana’s solid red status explains why several district have no Democrat running or even officially running yet. Bold is for people officially running and speculated candidates are italicized like the vast majority of people listed under Governor, Districts 5 and 6. District 2 seems to be the only blue district there.

      District 1 has a Republican and a Libertarian running.
      District 2 has two Democrats running.
      District 3 has a Republican running.
      District 4 has a Republican and a Libertarian running.
      District 5 has a Republican (five other potentials), zero Democrats (four potentials), and a Libertarian running.
      District 6 has eight Republicans (nine other potentials), three Democrats, and a Libertarian running.

      Filing Deadline: August 22, 2014
      Primary: November 4, 2014
      Congressional Run-Off (if needed): December 6, 2014

      There are eighteen (fourteen Republicans and four Democrats) potential candidates who haven’t filed yet. They have till August to do so.

  4. Dave says:

    Peregrin, if a candidate’s neighbors know him to be a liar, a cheat, unfaithful in family matters, etc etc what makes one think the candidate even understands the kind of integrity needed for public office? If (s)he lives a duplicitous life but tells you (s)he will look after your interests when in office, I think that’s the source of much of the disappointment we all experience in our political people today. No spine is no spine. Integrity means no sliding scale.

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