All those anonymous claims emanating from the Ensign camp that the Hamptons were trying to extort him for money? Well, now Ensign’s spokesperson says it was “exorbitant demands for cash and other financial benefits” made through an attorney and that the matter was referred to Ensign’s lawyer.
Maybe the Hamptons’ attorney is a klutz and botched the pre-lawsuit negotiations with demands that amounted to actionable extortion. But as the Las Vegas Sun has reported, neither the FBI nor local law enforcement is investigating any alleged extortion here.
So far this just looks like the usual run-up to a lawsuit. I guess Ensign gets more sympathy from his buddies in the Senate by telling them he’s being extorted. You know how it is …
Late Update: From TPM Reader AK:
Ensign’s behavior may be questionable, but so is Hampton’s. In his initial statement put out by his attorney, Hampton talks about a personal matter they were trying to keep private while five days earlier he wrote an odd and dramatic letter to a Fox News anchor trying to make this personal matter as public as possible.
David Kurtz is Managing Editor and Washington Bureau Chief of Talking Points Memo where he oversees the news operations of TPM and its sister sites.