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The Ensign Affair

Jim Burroway

June 16th, 2009
John Ensign with his wife Darlene at a 2005 Las Vegas charity event. (Photos by Marian Umhoefer/Las Vegas Review-Journal)

John Ensign with his wife Darlene at a 2005 Las Vegas charity event. (Photos by Marian Umhoefer/Las Vegas Review-Journal)

On 2004, Sen. John Ensign (R-NV) supported the proposed Federal Marriage Amendment, which was an attempt to write discrimination of gays and lesbians into the U.S. Constitution. This is what he said from the Senate floor:

“Marriage is the cornerstone on which our society was founded. For those who say that the Constitution is so sacred that we cannot or should not adopt the Federal Marriage Amendment, I would simply point out that marriage, and the sanctity of that institution, predates the American Constitution and the founding of our nation.”

The sanctity of the born-again Senator’s own marriage didn’t last so long. Ensign has now admitted that he had an affair between December 2007 and August 2008 with a woman who worked for both his re-election campaign and his Battleborn political action committee. To make matters worse, the New York Times reports that the woman’s husband had worked on Ensign’s Senate staff. MSNBC is reporting that Ensign is telling fellow Senators that he’s coming forward to head off an extortion attempt by his former mistress. Politico reports that it’s the mistress’s husband who was trying to shake Ensign down.

Ensign demanded Sen. Larry Craig’s resignation in September 2007 over Craig’s arrest for soliciting sexual favors in a Minnesota airport public men’s room. He also called for President Bill Clinton’s resignation during the Monica Lewinsky scandal while running for the Senate in 1998. No word yet on whether Ensign plans on resigning, or if he’s going to relinquish his chairmanship of the powerful GOP Policy Committee. Darlene Ensign, like Larry Craig’s wife, is standing by her man.



June 16th, 2009 | LINK

I am beginning to wonder if any of the supoorters of the Defense of Marriage Act and the Federal Marriage Amendment have been faithful to their spouse. Perhaps support for these sorts of things in a marker for being a cheating spouse.

June 16th, 2009 | LINK

Sanctity of marriage indeed!

He should absolutely resign- the hypocrite.

June 16th, 2009 | LINK

I know this is a non sequitur…but he is kind of hot! I have always had a thing for older, daddy types.

June 17th, 2009 | LINK

I love it. An adulterer teaching us about the sanctity of marriage.

June 17th, 2009 | LINK

Isn’t Adultery a much greater sin than being gay? Apparently not to right wing Republicans, I guess, since they are almost universally guilty of it!

May 2nd, 2011 | LINK

With a wife that beautiful he should claim temporary insanity!

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