National Review‘s Kate O’Beirne says the calls for Hastert to step down as Speaker will only increase. She’s almost certainly right — the House leadership utterly and completely mismanaged a major scandal at the worst possible moment, and it’s quite possible that the GOP will lose the House because of this. It isn’t certain that Hastert knew enough to start investigating Foley, but it’s hard to argue that what was apparently an open secret on the Hill shouldn’t have resulted in some kind of action. This lapse in judgment and propriety is absolutely unacceptable.
The Foley incident could swing the balance of power in the House, and the GOP has no one to blame for themselves.