Emerson Critical of GOP Leaders over Page Scandal

OCTOBER 12, 2006 - Posted at 4:19 p.m. CDT

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO - A Republican congresswoman from southeast Missouri says GOP leaders failed to take quick action to address the sex scandal involving ex-Representative Mark Foley, and it might cost them control of the House.

Jo Ann Emerson made those comments yesterday to a gathering of the Cape Girardeau Lions Club.

Foley, a Florida Republican, resigned last month after reports surfaced that he had sent sexually explicit electronic messages to teenage males who were former pages.  An ethics committee panel is sorting out whether House officials covered up what they knew.

Emerson says the bottom line is keeping kids safe.  She says she personally was unaware of complaints against Foley until the issue surfaced last month.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)