Skip to comments.Mahoney defends his record, apologizes for embarrassing family (Barf Alert!)
Posted on 10/14/2008 9:36:16 AM PDT by randita
Mahoney defends his record, apologizes for embarrassing family
By GEORGE BENNETT and JOHN LANTIGUA
Palm Beach Post Staff Writers
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
PALM BEACH GARDENS U.S. Rep. Tim Mahoney appeared in front of a room full of local reporters this morning to address the allegations that he paid $121,000 this year to prevent a lawsuit by a former female campaign worker with whom he reportedly had an affair.
Flanked by his wife, he read a brief statement apologizing for the embarrassment this has caused his family, but emphatically stating he has done nothing illegal.
"I have not violated my oath of office , nor have I broken any laws and I consider this to be a private matter. I take full responsibility for my actions and the pain that I have caused my wife Terry and my daughter Bailey. No marriage is perfect, but our private life is our private life. I'm sorry that these allegations have caused embarrassment and heartache."
He added, "I have not misused campaign funds and I am confident that when all the facts come to light, I will be completely vindicated.
"The people in my district know that I'm a fighter and I'm not going to allow this politically motivated story coming out 20 days before the election to change my resolve to serve the people of the 16th Congressional District. I have worked hard and I am prepared to put my faith in the people and ask for their vote."
Mahoney answered no questions after his statement.
The scandalous accusations broke Monday when ABC News posted a story on its Web site Monday claiming that Mahoney paid $121,000 this year to prevent a lawsuit by a former female campaign worker and congressional staffer with whom he had an extramarital affair and whom he later fired.Mahoney, D-Palm Beach Gardens, responded by calling for a House ethics committee investigation. Minutes later, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., called for an investigation.
Congress is in recess until after the Nov. 4 election, when Mahoney faces a tough challenge from Republican Tom Rooney.
Yesterday, Mahoney said that he believed his constituents needed a full accounting and announced he had requested the House ethics committee to review these allegations. I am confident that when the facts are presented that I will be vindicated."
According to ABC, the woman involved is Patricia Allen, 50, of Hobe Sound. Reached at her home Monday, she declined comment.
Rooney's campaign also had no comment on the allegations, a spokesman said.
The ABC report cites unnamed current and former Mahoney staffers who said the married congressman paid $61,000 to Allen and $60,000 to her attorney and promised Allen a $50,000-a-year job with the Nashville firm that handles Mahoney's campaign advertising.
Bloggers, writing before the ABC report about rumors of the alleged affair and payoff, implied that money paid to the firm of Fletcher Rowley Chao Riddle, ostensibly to purchase campaign spots in Florida, had gone to pay off Allen. "That's absolutely false," Bill Fletcher, the firm's CEO, told The Palm Beach Post. "I made no payment to any third party. Period. Paragraph. No exceptions."
Fletcher provided the newspaper with detailed records of television time acquired for the Mahoney campaign at stations in the West Palm Beach and Fort Myers markets with the campaign money, and executives at the stations confirmed that the purchases had been made.
The firm, which cited Mahoney's 2006 win as one of its success stories, severed its relationship with Mahoney on Monday.
"According to ABC News, Tim Mahoney apparently included our company in a secret legal settlement without the knowledge of our firm," a statement from Fletcher said. "Our firm did not agree to any legal settlement.
"If these allegations are true, Tim Mahoney's actions are unacceptable and not in line with FRCR's business ethics."
Mahoney was narrowly elected to represent Florida's 16th Congressional District in 2006 after Foley resigned in a scandal over sexually charged Internet messages he sent to congressional pages. That scandal and accusations that Republicans, who then controlled both chambers of Congress, had covered it up contributed to the Democrats' major wins that year.
Mahoney campaigned by decrying the "mess" in Congress and positioning himself as a straight-talking outsider "who believes in faith, family and personal responsibility."During that race, Mahoney lent his campaign $390,000 of his own money. In the first quarter of 2008 - about the time ABC says Mahoney agreed to pay Allen - the Mahoney campaign repaid $327,500 of the loans to Mahoney, according to Federal Election Commission reports.
According to ABC, Mahoney met Allen while campaigning in 2006 and invited her to work as a volunteer on the campaign. Following Mahoney's victory, Allen was hired to work on Mahoney's congressional staff in Florida, at a salary of $36,000, paid for by taxpayers.
When rumors of the affair leaked in Washington, Mahoney moved Allen to his campaign staff, ABC reported. According to FEC reports, she received $21,673 in salary from the Mahoney campaign between June 29, 2007, and Feb. 2.
Allen broke off the relationship after learning that Mahoney allegedly was having other affairs, ABC reported. Mahoney then fired her with a Jan. 20 phone call, and Allen hired attorney Gregory Coleman of West Palm Beach. Calls to Coleman on Monday were not returned.
According to ABC, Coleman wrote a letter to Mahoney in February accusing him of sexual harassment, intimidation and humiliation, and threatening a lawsuit. Mahoney staffers who were friends of Allen told ABC that in March, Mahoney agreed to a settlement, reportedly insisting that Allen destroy all audio and video recordings of a sexual nature.
U.S. Rep. Rahm Emanuel, D-Ill., who recruited Mahoney to run in 2006, heard vague rumors of Mahoney having an affair in early 2007, spokeswoman Sarah Feinberg said.
She said Emanuel confronted Mahoney, "told him he was in public life and had a responsibility to act accordingly and appropriately, and urged him to do so. They had no further conversations on this topic."
Sid Dinerstein, Palm Beach County Republican Party chairman, accused Democrats of a coverup.
"Rahm Emanuel admittedly knew about this for over a year and their reaction was to help (Mahoney) with his campaign," Dinerstein said.
But Feinberg said Emanuel did not know that the rumors involved a staffer or any payments, and she reiterated that Emanuel "confronted" Mahoney on the subject.
U.S. Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, also spoke to Mahoney about the rumors last month.
According to a Van Hollen spokeswoman, "After a rumor recently surfaced on a blog about Mr. Mahoney's affair, the chairman spoke briefly once with Mr. Mahoney about his responsibility as an elected official to act appropriately and urged him to come clean with his constituents if there was any truth to the rumor."
Staff writer Kathleen Chapman contributed to this story.
Find this article at: http://www.palmbeachpost.com/politics/content/local_news/epaper/2008/10/14/1014mahoney.html
Rush is playing his phone conv with the girl.
When the shoe is on the other foot, it’s a private matter.
What a fraud.
How do these people get THEIR WIFE to stand ther with them????
Why is she not hitting him with a fireplace poker?
geez these people are nuts
Sex with an intern. Just sex, and none of our business.
typical dem bulldroppings
Because even with the wives, it’s about the benefits derived from political ambition ie ... Hillary Clinton, Elizabeth Edwards and the list goes on.
Political power thoroughly corrupts men, women and families.
Liberals become Socialists.
Conservatives become RINO's.
Wives become WINO's(Wife In Name Only) or WIHO's (Wife In Hyphen Only).
ANOTHER slimy Dimocrat who got caught screwing around on his wife. And of course, said wife is standing right next to him while he tells the media he will be vindicated. Same old story.
Unlike Republican women, dem gals can be purchased.
This FL-16 race was already close. I think it just lurched to the right several points. :-)
Well, William Jefferson got re-elected....
Does Florida have adultery laws?
Funny, the newspaper doesn’t list his party affiliation.
He does show Pelosi’s as being the lead investigator...law ‘n order Nancy....under investigation herself...
This Congress needs to be ousted and tried for treason.
This story came out, according to him, 20 days before the election to embarrass him. When did the Foley story come out?
The difference is the republican resigns in shame and goes away never to be seen again. The democrat runs for an even higher office.
Is he in a conservative district?
“Flanked by his wife...”
Why do these wives appear with these scum?
I might “flank” him - and hand him divorce papers - publicly.
I can’t believe this is coming from the Palm Beach Compost.
This seems to be a fairly competent r report. Not biased and it shows a Democrat to be dirty.
It didn’t go in to the details of the recorded conversation that really shows this guy to be a jerk. But still, coming from the Compost?
P.S. it’s been cutting staff