Santorum to the Rescue

Posted July 19, 2005 at 7:04pm

GOP Sen. Rick Santorum is urging patience regarding the plight of fellow Republican and Pennsylvanian Rep. Don Sherwood, who still has to deal with those unpleasant allegations of abusing a woman who says she had a five-year romantic affair with the married lawmaker. Sherwood insists he never hurt the woman and that he was only giving her a massage when she called the police.

During a press conference in Pennsylvania earlier this week, Santorum said of the Sherwood scandal, “I don’t know how that’s going to shake out. All I would suggest is that, again, until we know all the facts and we look at the job that Congressman Sherwood is doing and make decisions based on the facts and the work he’s doing,” according to the Wilkes-Barre Times Leader newspaper.

Santorum dodged the question of whether the allegations against Sherwood have hurt the GOP Party. Instead he said, “I think what hurts and helps the Republican Party is what we’re doing in serving the American people.”

Democratic operatives, who have had a good ol’ time hammering Santorum over his blaming Boston liberals for the Catholic Church sexual abuse scandal, were predictably snarky about the Santorum-Sherwood news.

“Rick Santorum’s clear moral vision enables him to blame entire cities for the actions of pedophiles and declare that women who hold jobs threaten their children so it’s surprising that he skipped the chance to tell Mr. Sherwood that adultery isn’t part of the ‘It Takes a Family’ agenda,” Phil Singer, spokesman for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, told HOH.

Of Mice and Men. Screams are emanating from House Majority Leader Tom DeLay’s office, thanks to a couple of mice running wild in the Texas Republican’s leadership quarters. But DeLay can’t kill the rodents. Not because he wouldn’t like to do what comes naturally to a former exterminator, but because his “pet-friendly” chief of staff, Tim Berry, won’t stand for it.

We hear Berry is a bit of a PETA nut, unless this whole story is a clever ruse by the men in DeLay’s office to have lunch with lettuce-latticed Playboy bunnies today (see next item). Whatever the case may be, one aide to DeLay said Berry has laid down the law: “The two mice that have inhabited our offices are not to be harmed in any way.”

Our DeLay source says the office has divided into two factions — the “let’s-get-the-mice faction” and the “leave-them-alone” faction. “The leave-them-alone faction has won out, at the direction of our chief of staff,” the aide told HOH.

DeLay, apparently, would be in that losing faction. But at least he’s getting some satisfaction, according to our DeLay office source who said “Mr. DeLay thinks it’s funny that the mice have left a few little presents on one staff member’s desk.” We hear that the recipient of the mice’s largesse was DeLay flak Shannon Flaherty.

PETA Party. It’s that day again, the one day of the year when PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, is beloved on Capitol Hill.

It might just be because the animal-hugging bunch is once again using Playboy models dressed in lettuce bikinis to serve veggie dogs to undersexed and overworked staffers in the Rayburn courtyard. (Though the men will never admit that.)

Wearing only “strategically placed lettuce leaves,” PETA said its veggie-dog poster girls, Playboy playmate Robin Arcuri and centerfold Lauren Anderson, both vegetarians, will be the servers for the organization’s ninth annual Congressional Veggie Dog Lunch, at the Independence Avenue entrance to the Rayburn House Office Building.

The bunny/veggie lunch comes in retaliation for the American Meat Institute’s “National Hot Dog Month,” in which athletes, including former Minnesota Twins slugger Harmon Killebrew, are publicizing what PETA calls “artery-clogging meat hot dogs.”

Much better to have a tofu pup, served by a lettuce-munching Playboy bunny.

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