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Posted by on Sep 4, 2007 in At TMV | 3 comments

Larry Craig Seems Not Sure About Resigning Now

I wrote an article a couple days ago entitled,

Senator Larry Craig’s “Intent to Resign:” When An Apology Isn’t An Apology.

I saw the ‘fudging’ phrase “intent to resign” and copied it out in the post, because it seemed to follow his previous yes/no-yes/no patterns in conduct.

Now it appears I should have also given the post a sub-sub title: “When a Resignation Isn’t A Resignation.”

“Intent to Resign” is code in many quarters. Senator Craig’s seemed as Machiavelli advises: Make immanent resolves but not decisive ones; instead, stall for time to position oneself.

The latest reports tonight say Larry Craig’s adopted children, who are adults, have come home to hear his story, and that their findings indicate that he ought not resign. The focus appears to have shifted to ‘his legal case in Minn,” perhaps with the idea of whipping it down to a he said/he said situation; an old sidestep ploy that often only the naive think settles a matter. To plead entrapment is no political defense, though it may be a legal one.

In political situations at the highest level, in this case a Senate seat… and taking the advice of grown children, who presumably dearly love their adopted father, but who are also ‘splashed’ by such contretemps, either way, seems an odd way to make a decision to ‘fight.’

More than any family counsel, most in his position lawyer up heavily. Perhaps he already has without mentioning it. But he mentions so much else. Larry Craig seems to have an repetitive split between saying and doing about three events that on a scale of 1-10 in terms of import, are all 11s:

1. Saying one thing in Congress about gays and GLBTs, but doing another thing privately.

2. Saying he didn’t do anything at all in the Minn. airport bathroom, but pleading guilty to a lesser charge.

3. Saying he intends to resign, but pulling back from his assertion, letting it be known a few days after broadcasting his intent everywhere… now, ‘maybe not.’

Perhaps this Yes/No whirligig in Senator Craig’s public pronouncements, is actually our suddenly clear look into old style political strategy. In our military family, we have a somewhat crude saying about such dodgy maneuvers: “Some politicos simply throw up a flag and see who throws up their flags in solidarity… and also to see who just simply throws up.”

I wish for the Senator the best possible outcome in his personal life. But, his political life may be at an end as a Senator, mainly because of lack of outcry from his comrades en masse to keep him seated.

If this were a Chekov play, I think we’d hear off stage left the sound of bookies sharpening their pencils. I wonder what odds they’s be giving, either way?

Some stories are not life and death important, but do grow centipede-like. Is this story going to change the course of the universe? No. However, Sen. Craig, perhaps without meaning to, gives one of the most close-up and transparent looks at the guts of how a certain kind of ‘old school’ power operates… mostly because Sen Craig, unlike many others in a tight spot as he is politically, is very talkative. His lawyers may soon put the kibosh on that.

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Copyright 2007 The Moderate Voice
  • domajot

    I don’t think Mr Craig has much of chance for being seen as a decisive leader.
    He pleads guilty, but claims innocence.
    He ‘intends’ to resign, but might not.

    He seems to he upset and confused, and I can empathize with that. The political pressure placed on him could only exacerbate his emotional turmoil
    Being a US Senator is a responsible position, however, and being able to keep your wits about you in a difficult situation seems like a basic requirement to me.

    I understand he is consulting with his grown childeren and others now. It’s been several months since the incident took place Consultations, soul searching should have come a long time ago, certaily before entering pleas or announcing ‘intents’ of any kind.

  • kritter

    I watched reports saying that Craig spent last week lobbying support from his fellow Senators. When that support was not forthcoming, he gave his resignation speech using the word “intend”, purposely so that he could change his mind if any support for him surfaced.

    Over the weekend, Sen Specter came through, claiming on cable that Craig had been railroaded into pleading guilty, and stating that there was not enough evidence to prove the crime if it went to court. He then, inexplicably, urged Craig to try to withdraw his guilty plea.

    That, apparently was all Craig needed to try to hang on. Realistically, he has little or no chance of succeeding, but recanting his resignation will keep the scandal in the news cycle for at least another week.( which must be giving Minority Leader McConnell fits). I expect the GOP to exert further pressure to get him to resign (for good this time), while the Democrats stay silent.

  • Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés

    I agree with the empathy Domajot;
    And Kritter, yes, Sen Specter seems to have steered Sen C. into a whole other corner. I know it sounds odd, and I don’t mean to at all be underestimating Sen S, but he sounds terribly naive for some reason.


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