Right-Wing Hypocrisy Refresher


It’s been a long time since WC spent some time with the egregious hypocrites that seem to be commonly found in the leadership of the Republican Party. It’s been long enough, apparently, that some folks are accusing WC of having no reason to be so cynical about the Republican Party.

It’s very nearly an endless process, but let’s have a look at a double handful of some of the more outrageous examples.

swaggart

Jimmy Swaggart

Pentecostal televangelist, right wing politician and fundamentalist who described feminists, liberals, Democrats and rock musicians as agents of Satan who promote immorality. Revealed as serial aldulterist with prostitutes Debra Murphee (1988), Rosemary Garcia (1991) and Catherine Campen (1989). Let’s hear it for family values and Godliness!

Newt Gingrich

Newt Gingrich

While famously berating President Clinton for the Lewinsky affair, The Newt was having an affair of his own, cheating on his second wife second wife, Marianne Ginther, with the woman, Callista Bisek, who became his third wife, and was 20 years younger. That was after The Newt cheated on his first wife, Jackie Battley, with Ginther. And in the best trdition of family values, while Battley was in the hospital recovering from cancer surgery, The Newt insisted on discussing the terms of their divorce. And then refused to pay Battley either alimony or child support.

Bob Livingston

Bob Livingston

Bob Livingston (R, Louisiana), the Chair of the powerful Appropriations Committee. “One of the loudest of those calling for the House to impeach Clinton over an extra-marital affair,” noted the National Journal, Livingston was ousted after he was forced to publicly confess to committing adultery “on occasion.”

Jim Bakker

Jim Bakker

Another right-wing Pentecostal televangelist caught in a major sex scandal. In 1987, Jim Bakker, who co-hosted “The PTL Club” with his wife, Tammy Faye Bakker, was disgraced when it came out that he had cheated on his wife with church secretary Jessica Hahn and paid her $265,000 to keep quiet. In 1989, Bakker was convicted of fraud and racketeering charges in a federal court and sentenced to 45 years in prison and a $500,000 fine. Swaggart, ironically, was vehemently critical of Bakker in 1987, calling him “a cancer on the body of Christ” because of his affair with Hahn.

Larry Craig

Larry Craig

U.S. Senator Larry Craig R, Idaho) Idaho was a strident social conservative with a very anti-gay record. Craig opposed gay men serving in the U.S. military, and he supported an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would have outlawed same-sex marriage. In June 2007, the married Craig was arrested for lewd conduct in a men’s room stall at the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport; an undercover police officer said that Craig’s behavior indicated he was seeking a sexual encounter. Craig pled guilty to a lesser charge of disorderly conduct. In December 2007, eight gay men told the Idaho Statesman that they had either had sexual affairs with Craig or that he had made sexual advances to them.

Ted Haggard

Ted Haggard

Rev. Haggard was a strong supporter of George W. Bush’s presidency. He worked to rally GOP “values voters” in the 2004 election. Haggard preached against abortion, premarital sex, adultery and gay marriage. In 2006, a male escort named Mike Jones revealed that the married Haggard had been a client; in addition to paying for sex and committing adultery, Jones said, Haggard was fond of using crystal meth. Admitting to his followers that he was guilty of “sexual immorality,” Haggard resigned from his position with the National Association of Evangelicals.

Mark Sanford

Mark Sanford

Sanford had a socially conservative record during his years as governor of South Carolina and as a member of the House of Representatives. He opposed abortion and gay marriage, voted to impeach Bill Clinton, and described Clinton’s actions during the Lewinsky scandal as “reprehensible.” Sanford was caught cheating on his wife with a woman from Argentina named María Belén Chapur. You know, “hiking the Appalachian Trail.” Sanford was censured by the South Carolina House Judiciary Committee for his misuse of state travel funds.

John Ensign

John Ensign

U.S. Senator John Ensign (R, Nevada) was held in high regard by the Christian Coalition, Focus on the Family and other Christian Right theocrats. Staunchly anti-abortion, he was a Pentecostal who considered himself “born again.” He voted in favor of a constitutional ban on gay marriage, he was active in the Promise Keepers and the Christian Coalition gave him a 100% rating in 2003. Ensign called for President Clinton’s resignation in 1998, saying that an adulterer was unfit to be president. Ensign didn’t practice what he preached; he ended up resigning from the Senate in 2011 because of the scandal surrounding his adulterous affair with Cynthia Hampton, the wife of Douglas Hampton, an administrative aide in Ensign’s office and a close personal friend.

Mark Foley

Mark Foley

Florida Republican Rep. Mark Foley received an 84% rating from the Christian Coalition during his terms in the U.S. House. Lower than the 100% rating John Ensign received. And his voting record was anti-gay, which was ironic in view of the fact that, in 2006, he got caught up in a gay sex scandal involving teenage male congressional pages. Foley, who had been sending the pages sexually explicit emails, resigned from Congress.

Rep. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., talks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 15, 2007, after making his farewell address on the floor on the House. (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke)

Dennis Hastert (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke)

Recent Republican Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert plead to money laundering charges arising out of an agreement to pay more than $3 million in hush money to cover up sexual abuse involving a male student at a high school where Hastert taught decades ago. That means Hastert is the third of the three Republican leaders who pressed for President Clinton’s impeachment for an extra-marital affair, while themselves guilty of conduct as bad or worse.
But WC doesn’t want you to think that this kind of hypocrisy is limited to the halls of Congress. If you venture out into the “heartland,” say, Indiana, you can find the same conduct combined with a kind of breathtaking stupidity.

Rep. Jud McMillin (AP Photo/Michael Conroy, File)

Rep. Jud McMillin (AP Photo/Michael Conroy, File)

McMillin was the House Majority Leader of the Indiana House of Representatives. At least until he texted video of himself having sex with a woman to everyone on his contacts list. During his five years in the legislature, McMillin has crusaded to “protect the integrity of the institution of marriage,” but the Advocate reported that the woman on the video he texted was not, in fact, his wife. According to his campaign website, he claimed that “the family has always been the foundation of our strength of community” and that “[i]n these times of turmoil the rest of the country could learn something from our example.” This wasn’t the first or the worst of this prizes little embarrassments.

Most of these bums probably work as lobbyists now, meaning they think they are qualified to rub elbows and influence their former colleagues. Who generally are Republicans. It makes you wonder, doesn’t it?

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