On the October 3 edition of MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews, MSNBC political analyst Pat Buchanan characterized communications former Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL) allegedly sent to underage former congressional pages as "valentines over the email." Later, on the same day's edition of Scarborough Country on MSNBC, Buchanan characterized Foley as "a sexual predator ... who's posturing as a conservative."
On Scarborough Country, Buchanan described Foley as "a sexual predator from Florida who's posturing as a conservative" but did not explain his suggestion that a sexual predator can only "posture" as a conservative and not actually be one. In 2005, the American Conservative Union (ACU) awarded Foley a rating of 63 out of 100 and a lifetime rating of 78 out of 100. In 2003, the Family Research Council (FRC) gave Foley a score of 85 out of 100.
From the 5 p.m. October 3 edition of MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews:
SHRUM: The question is conduct. The question is not sexual orientation.
BUCHANAN: Why do you think they keep them out of Boy Scouts?
SHRUM: Pat, why do you think it was? Why do you think it was that Phil Crane, that conservative paragon --
MATTHEWS: [Former Rep.] Dan Crane [R-IL]. Dan Crane.
SHRUM: -- hit on a young woman page in the Congress?
BUCHANAN: Dan Crane. I recommended he be thrown out of Congress.
MATTHEWS: That was Dan Crane, by the way.
BUCHANAN: Yeah, that was Dan Crane. I recommended he be expelled, and so should [former Rep. Gerry] Studds [D-MA], and you guys elected Studds five more times and made him a chairman of a committee.
SHRUM: Wait a minute -- you guys. Wait a minute. Wait a minute. Wait a minute. Wait a minute.
BUCHANAN: He's a hero. He didn't [inaudible] conduct. He didn't send valentines over the email. [laughs]
SHRUM: You've got your facts wrong, Pat. The ethics committee recommended that both of them be reprimanded. The House said, absolutely not, we're going to increase the penalty to censure. And I think what we're seeing today is that those who screamed and yelled about that have become complete hypocrites. The notion that [House Speaker] Denny Hastert got this news and did nothing more than what Catholic bishops did, which is sit down and tell the guy to sin no more, is incredible.
From the October 3 edition of MSNBC's Scarborough Country:
SCARBOROUGH: You know, Pat Buchanan, I always use my wife as a barometer because she's not a political nut like me. And when my wife comes to me and says, "How could Denny Hastert and the Republican leadership kept this to themselves for six, seven, eight months?" I know the GOP's in big trouble.
BUCHANAN: Oh, it's in terrible trouble. I can't think of a worse, worse type scandal, Joe. You got a sexual predator from Florida who's posturing as a conservative. You got Hastert and all these fellows going back and forth not remembering, others saying, I told him, and it looks like a cover-up is going on.