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Sex scandal angers Republicans

Leading GOP lawmakers try to push out Sen. Larry Craig of Idaho. Craig's friends were quick to turn on him, said Slate. Would a heterosexual scandal have been OK? said DailyKos.

GOP leaders pushed Idaho Sen. Larry Craig out of his senior committee positions, and several prominent Republicans called on Craig to resign over his June arrest in a Minneapolis airport bathroom. “It is unacceptable for a member of Congress to be soliciting sex in public restrooms,” said Sen. Kit Bond of Missouri, who stopped short of demanding that Craig quit.

It is tough to understand people like Larry Craig, said David Ehrenstein in the Los Angeles Times (free registration required). The gay rights movement has made tremendous strides over the last few decades. “Today’s gays want to get married,” so why is the “I’m not gay” crowd still lurking in bathroom stalls?

Craig’s friends certainly didn’t stick around long after they learned his secret, said John Dickerson in Slate.com. GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney “ran from his former Idaho campaign chairman as if he’d been in the next stall.” That makes political sense for someone gunning for the “family values” vote, but it’s no way to treat a friend.

Funny, the family-values Republicans aren't calling for Sen. David Vitter to leave town, said DailyKos. That might be because Vitter’s sex scandal—he visited prostitutes—is heterosexual in nature. It could also be a hypocritical political calculation. If Craig quits his replacement will be appointed by Idaho’s Republican governor. Vitter’s home state of Louisiana has a Democratic governor, so he would likely be replaced by a Democrat, causing the GOP to lose a Senate seat.

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