Mark Foley Quits Congress After Propositioning Boy Pages
Saying he was “deeply sorry,” Congressman Mark Foley (R-FL) resigned from Congress today, hours after ABC News questioned him about sexually explicit internet messages with current and former congressional pages under the age of 18.
A spokesman for Foley, the chairman of the House Caucus on Missing and Exploited Children, said the congressman submitted his resignation in a letter late this afternoon to Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert.
The emails weren’t sexually explicit but very, very weird.
While Foley obviously had to go after this, it also means one more seat being handed to the Democrats.
UPDATE: Steven Taylor notes that other Foley e-mails were more explicit.
And, no, the irony that he chaired the House Caucus on Missing and Exploited Children did not escape me.
UPDATE: ABC’s Brian Ross has some of the actual instant messages. I’ve posted them below the fold.
[A]ccording to several former congressional pages, the congressman used the Internet to engage in sexually explicit exchanges.
They say he used the screen name Maf54 on these messages provided to ABC News.
Maf54: You in your boxers, too?
Teen: Nope, just got home. I had a college interview that went late.
Maf54: Well, strip down and get relaxed.
Maf54: What ya wearing?
Teen: tshirt and shorts
Maf54: Love to slip them off of you.
And this one:
Maf54: Do I make you a little horny?
Teen: A little.
The language gets much more graphic, too graphic to be broadcast, and at one point the congressman appears to be describing Internet sex.
Federal authorities say such messages could result in Foley’s prosecution, under some of the same laws he helped to enact.
“Adds up to soliciting underage children for sex,” said Brad Garrett, a former FBI agent and now an ABC News consultant. “And what it amounts to is serious both state and federal violations that could potentially get you a number of years.”