At a press conference this morning, Hastert began to qualify his defense of how his office handled Mark Foley's indiscretions, as new details have emerged that cast his earlier versions of events in doubt.
"I donât think anybody in my office at any time did anything wrong," Hastert said -- hardly a ringing endorsement. However, âif anybody is found to have hidden information or covered up information, they really should be gone,â he told reporters. Hastert did not indicate he was undertaking any particular effort on his part to find out who on his staff misled him.
As we noted yesterday
, Hastert's chief of staff knew about Foley's problem back in 2003, according to two congressional staffers -- one of them Foley's former chief of staff.
Asked about Rep. Jim Kolbe's (R-AZ) recent revelation that he'd confronted Foley over suggestive messages sent to a former page, Hastert implied -- but did not explicitly state -- that Kolbe had never brought the problem to the Speaker's office. "If it was something that was of a nature that should have been reported or brought forward, then he should have done that," he said.Update
the AP's write-up.