October 24, 2006

Column of the Day: Dennis Prager Comes Out…. Against Patty Wetterling

Filed under: Quotes, Etc. of the Day,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 12:24 pm

….. against MN-06 Congressional candidate Patty Wetterling’s unbelievably irresponsible lie in her TV ad:

A vote for Patty Wetterling can hurt children

I do not live in Minnesota.

Nor have I ever written a column about any congressional race.

But what Patty Wetterling, Democratic congressional candidate in Minnesota’s sixth district, just did is so wrong, so dishonest, so low even for the generally negative tone of political advertising, and so injurious to children, that I am breaking a lifelong silence on congressional races to beg Democrats and others in her district not to vote for her.

This is not motivated by partisanship; I would even prefer a candidate to the left of her. Vote for the Green candidate if there is one; write in someone to the left of her. But to vote for Patty Wetterling is to harm political discourse and compromise our society’s battle against child abuse.

Her recent television ad, referring to the Mark Foley scandal, states: “It shocks the conscience . . . congressional leaders have admitted covering up the predatory behavior of a congressman who used the Internet to molest children.”

Even the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, among America’s most left/liberal newspapers, which essentially endorses only Democrats, published an article under the headline, “Wetterling ad overstates facts: The TV spot by the Sixth District candidate is wrong in stating that members of Congress admitted to a coverup — none has.”

But that lie in the Patty Wetterling ad is actually the lesser of its sins. The greater sin, the unforgivable one, is its characterization that what former Republican Congressman Mark Foley did was “molest children.”

Foley not only did not molest any children, to the best of anyone’s knowledge, he did not even engage in consensual sex with any page over the age of consent. (There was a relationship with one adult male who had served as a page.)

So that is the second lie in the Patty Wetterling ad. No one was molested. And no child was involved at any time in any way.

That is what prompts this anger at Patty Wetterling more than her lies, which she continues to defend.

….. He never molested a child. First, he never touched any page(s), since you cannot sexually molest a person you don’t touch. It utterly cheapens the word “molest.”

Second, no “children” were involved.

To equate seductive e-mails to a 16-year-old — or even the more explicit instant messages with an 18-year-old (which no Republican knew about) — with “molesting children” — only undermines our efforts to fight the enormous, almost unparalleled, evil of child molestation.

Prager goes on to say that the fact that Wetterling’s child was abducted in 1989 and never found was and still is awful, but not an excuse for lying about Mark Foley.

Unless I get a better suggestion (which would be welcome) Wetterling, should she win and/or stay in politics, will hereafter be named Panderer Patty on this blog.

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