October 15th, 2007
10:00 AM ET
11 years ago

Craig: Romney 'threw me under the campaign bus'

Craig is not happy with how the Romney campaign treated him.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. Larry Craig, the Idaho Republican caught in a Minneapolis bathroom sex sting this summer, said presidential candidate Mitt Romney "threw me under the campaign bus" when news of his arrest came out.

"He not only threw me under his campaign bus, he backed up and ran over me again," Craig told NBC's Matt Lauer in an interview set to air later this week on the "Today" show.

Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, said Craig's behavior was "disgraceful" and called for Craig's resignation when news of the senator’s arrest came out at the end of August. (Ticker: Romney: Craig has to look at his conscience)

Craig was Romney's Senate liaison before resigning from the campaign.

Romney spokesman Kevin Madden defended the presidential candidate's response. "Governor Romney simply believes that a public office is a public trust," Madden said. "He believes when a public official enters a guilty plea, they have broken that public trust and should step aside for the sake of their constituents."

Related: Sen. Craig says he'll appeal

Click here to see CNN's new political portal: CNNPolitics.com

- CNN's Scott Anderson and Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Larry Craig • Mitt Romney
soundoff (68 Responses)
  1. Tom - Dedham, Mass

    Unlike the Democrats, Republicans toss the dirt bags out.

    Barney Frank's "friend" set up shop and was running a brothel out of Barney's townhouse and yet Barney keeps getting elected over and over again.

    “Although Frank and Gobie differ in some details of their relationship, they agree on the story line. They met on April fool’s Day 1985. The representative answered a classified ad in the Washington Blade, the local gay weekly. "Exceptionally good-looking, personable, muscular athlete is available. Hot bottom plus large endowment equals a good time."
    Then in his third term, the 45-year-old representative had not yet stated his homosexuality publicly. He paid Gobie $80 in cash for sex.
    Gobie, then 28, was one of many young men "freelancing" in male prostitution. Gobie said he was born in Boston and grew up in a military family. He has felony convictions for possession of cocaine, oral sodomy and production of obscene items involving a juvenile.
    Gobie and Frank say they became more friends than sexual partners. Gobie says he attended a bill-signing at the White House, and helped coach and played left field for Frank's team in the Congressional Softball League. "I was the star player," Gobie said.
    Frank began to help Gobie financially, paying his attorney and court-ordered psychiatrist. The House member also said he hired Gobie as a personal aide, housekeeper and driver, but Gobie said that was a "cover story" concocted for probation officers.
    In late 1985, Gobie says, he began to use Frank's apartment and two other locations for prostitution. Frank knew about the prostitution all along, but it was never explicitly discussed, Gobie says.
    "He knew exactly what I was doing," Gobie said. "It was pretty obvious. If he had to come home early {from work}, he would call home to be sure the coast was clear . . . . He was living vicariously through me. He said it was kind of a thrill, and if he had been 20 years younger he might be doing the same thing."

    He got repimanded by the House, but the Republicans rightfully wanted more, but didn't get it.

    The Democrats gave him a standing ovation, a STANDING FREAKIN' OVATION.

    Like his actions were something good?

    Don't care if he is gay, my disgust is with his actions only.

    Now Craig is placing blame with Romney, hello Larry, you pled guilty, end of story.

    I wish someone would really throw this jerk under a bus.

    Hey CNN, speaking of Democrats, every time this guy speaks or "goes to the bathroom" you post it as vital news, how about reporting on the DEMOCRATIC Mayor of Atlantic City who took off for two weeks and showed up last week out of the blue.

    Or the TWELVE Democrats from NJ who got bagged in a huge corruption scandal a few weeks back that included all facets of jersey's government.

    Neither of these EVER were put on the ticker, but a Craig bathroom break is over and over a story?

    October 15, 2007 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  2. Tomas S, Sault Ste Marie, MI

    You mean thrown under the campaign bathroom stall?

    October 15, 2007 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  3. Mia


    If we cleaned house, who would be left to run the country? If money is the name of the game in politics, would you really expect purity in our leaders? There are literally thousands of average-Joes that would probably run the country better than any of these politicians.

    The Republicans put the targets on their own backs. Not to mention they seem to be one-upping every Democratic misstep with the likes of Foley, Craig, and co. If you run like your the party of purists, you better be prepared to back it up. Ditch the holier-than-thou attitude, and you'll win back some of your seats.

    October 15, 2007 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  4. Chris, Middletown, CT

    Are you looking for fair coverage...and an audience receptive to the truth? You won't find that here...you will cult like followers of Hillary who will defend even the most indefensible acts. (even though they won't) Liberals....look up a Marxist grassroots organizer....Saul D. Alinsky – and who was one of his best students?? (yep....Hillary...and see what big goverment program his is working on next....just research..alittle??)

    October 15, 2007 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  5. windrider, Columbus OH

    Craig has a loooooooooooong history, dating back to 1982 when he was investigated for cocaine use and sexual relationships with Congressional pages (shades of Mark Foley!) I don't know what he thinks he is trying to prove, but all he's succeeded in doing is betraying his family and his constituents, and humiliating himself further in public. No judge will give him a do-over on a guilty plea when it's crystal clear that he understood the charges and the consequences. If any court allows him to renege on a guilty plea, there will be an avalanche of appeals from every criminal in the country who copped a plea for a lesser charge and lighter sentence. It's time to buck up and face your consequences, Senator (soon to be "former Senator")

    October 15, 2007 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  6. Nicole, Cincinnati, OH

    Regardless of whether he was set up or not, he pled guilty!!! He should have resigned when he said he was going to, why would anyone who is trying to get elected to run the country willingly allow a man who pled guilty to breaking the law in on that. Why did he plead if he wasn't guilty? Republican or Democrat you plead guilty and when members of your party don't want to touch you for fear of ruining their chances in the next election you don't get to whine!!!

    October 15, 2007 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  7. Jim, Cedar Park, TX

    One should not throw stones in a glass house.

    October 15, 2007 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  8. Liberal Chic

    Oh, for crying out loud. Give the guy a break. I don't like his politics, but he is just a gay/bisexual man. He did not hurt anybody.

    Maybe if we were a more accepting sort of society, we wouldn't have these incidents and gay men and women could run openly for elected offices.

    He is a closet homosexual. So what? It doesn't affect his judgement as a politician. He will be just as effective/ineffective as he has always been.

    Let's be nice to each other.

    October 15, 2007 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  9. Anonymous

    MB, Orlando, FL :

    Why isn't the Republican constituency outraged about the hypocrity of Vitter? It seems people are more upset that Craig is gay than that he is a hypocrite.

    October 15, 2007 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  10. Shawnie Cannon, Grants Pass OR

    Craig, You are not fit to represent Romney or Republicans.

    Way to go Romney!

    October 15, 2007 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  11. Liberal Chic

    Why isn't the Republican constituency outraged about the hypocrity of Vitter? It seems people are more upset that Craig is gay than that he is a hypocrite.

    Craig is just gay/bisexual. I don't like his politics but he hasn't hurt anybody. His sexual orientation does not impair his effectiveness/ineffectiness as a politician. Maybe if we were a more accepting sort of society, we wouldn't have these awkward incidents.

    Why not be be nice to one another.

    October 15, 2007 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  12. lou tulsa ok

    If there ever was a mouth that belonged in the closet it is Craig's. Why doesn't he just shut up and go home? He's an embarrassment to his poor wife, his family, and his constituents, not to mention the rest of the US. Hey, Larry, go home. NO one cares about your opinions any more. GET IT???

    October 15, 2007 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  13. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    In virtually all Repellican campaigns, you're either on the bus or off the bus, and closet poofters are definitely off.

    October 15, 2007 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  14. Coach Haughton NH

    Is Larry Craig an accurate representation of the republican party?

    October 15, 2007 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  15. Pat Huntington NY

    This guy continues to amaze me beyond expectations...just can't seem to take responsibility for his own actions. First, by soliciting bathroom sex. SEcond, if he really didn't solicit bathroom sex, then by trying to get out of trouble by waiving his senate ID in front of the cop. Third, at least for lying about it and hiding it from the Senate Ethics Committee. However, by staying to the end of his term, Idahoans will be constantly reminded of this blight, and will vote for the democrat contender next year.

    October 15, 2007 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  16. Val Davydov, Agawam, MA

    Larry Craig: you are indeed a disgrace to the Republican party – Gov. Romney did the right thing to call on your resignation and to rebuke your behavior, and you should have heeded on Governor's wise advice and resigned right there and then. You admitted yourself you were guilty as sin you pled guilty for crying out loud. Stop whining and get you ass out of Washington now.

    October 15, 2007 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  17. Tom - Dedham, Mass

    Chris from CT, Shrillary not only follows that guys teachings, but she wrote her college thesis on the very subject.

    She idolizes him, but I am not concerned as I am actually happy about that, Karl Rove is already working on that "vast right-wing conpiracy attack ad. Truthful as hell though.

    I feel no sorrow for the clintonista's who blindly follow her every thought like a cult, even the MSM will not be able to ignore her past when it is CLEARLY and TRUTHFULLY presented to the American people by whomever the Republicans put against her.

    I do however feel bad for the fine candidates like Biden, Richardson and Dodd, who I don't agree with on a lot, but are far SUPERIOR candidates in comparison to Hillbilly.

    They deserve more recognition for their actual IDEAS, not stolen or simply STUPID that are put forth by the queen, but the sheep will get what they pay for.

    Mia, I could not agree with you any more in regards to people preaching faith and how all their values are based on that.

    True SOME of the Repub's play the holier than thou card and I hate that, but that does not mean CNN and the MSM should IGNORE other stories.

    I am a fan of Obama and his wife (even as a Republican), but I am getting turned off by his starting to use faith in his campaign too much.

    Come up with your stances on issues and just tell the people what you think, PERIOD.

    I do however have no problem with someone highlighting the fact that they and their spouse have been married and faithful to the same person for years and other things of that natue.

    October 15, 2007 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  18. David, Dallas Tx

    Mike F from Kalamazoo, MI said: ...unfortunately for [Larry Craig], he's not in the same party as William Jefferson, Barney Frank, or Ted Kennedy, but rather a party that is actively trying to clean up their image.

    Ah, you must've seen the Lauer/DeLay interview; you're parroting DeLay's tactics very well.

    In the interview, DeLay said, "You see the Democrats re-elect the people with their problems. Republicans kick them out. If you look at what's going on, it's how you handle it as a party."

    Of course, DeLay withdrew from his position as Speaker of the House because he became the subject of a corruption probe–but not right away. Let's not forget that, when the investigation was announced, congressional rules forbade congressmen under criminal investigation from retaining their leadership positions–and DeLay's response was to try, unsuccessfully, to use his political muscle to get those rules changed so he could retain all his power.

    So Larry Craig is in good company–Republicans that do whatever they can to try to hold onto their power no matter how bad it makes their party look.

    And, just to set the record straight: Republicans are letting Craig continue on as Senator. There is no Republican movement to impeach Craig. Nobody's kicking him out. Which makes DeLay a liar as well as a hypocrite.

    So I'd be careful about quoting him, Mike.

    October 15, 2007 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  19. Rodney Dallas TX

    I am no where near a Romney supporter but he had every right to throw your butt under the campaign bus. Hell, you shouldn't be offended, you throw yourself under the bathroom stall all the time.

    October 15, 2007 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  20. Margie Cline - Wilmington, DE

    Oh, and how about lying and corrupting the judicial process for personal gain, Mr. Toilet Cruiser ?

    Btw- are you STILL claiming not be be a gay man ? At least George Michael had the courage to at least admit his hanky-panky before crying foul.

    October 15, 2007 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  21. Rodney Dallas TX

    SET UP? Are you serious? Do you know how many bathrooms are in an airport. So they were lucky in putting a police officer in that particular stall in that particular bathroom in that particular terminal in that particular city? I think not. You tried something and got caught. You can't be set up for something like that unless you are going along with it. What a dummy! I can't believe the people of Idaho havn't rebelled yet to get this man impeached (or whatever it's called to get a Senator fired).

    October 15, 2007 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  22. David, Gilbert Arizona

    The mistake some posters on this blog are making is that of fair unbiased complete coverage of an issue. The cable news networks, all of them, are driven by ratings. They are no different than a sit-com or television drama. It is all about the ratings. Long gone are the days when reporting the news meant exactly that, reporting. Now it is all about making news and reporting only the sensational. We consumers are as much to blame as the networks are.

    I think Craig should resign but not because he was tapping his foot in a public stall, even when children can see him. Tapping your foot is not illegal, even in a public bathroom. I doubt very highly a child would have even the slightest clue why, or experience the least amount of trama from, someone tapping their foot in a bathroom stall anyway. It is more likely the child would think the person likes the song they are listening to. The disgust most people are experiencing is made up in their own imaginations, not from what actually occurred.

    Romney's "disgrace" was nothing more than a campaign ploy pandering for conservative votes. Even so, Craig was the one who through himself under the bus. Romney just took advantage of the situation. I'm not surprised at either of them. It just shows the character of both individuals, which is nothing to brag about in either case.

    Craig should indeed resign. He's made a complete mockery of himself. He has shown himself to be a fool, not for the foot tapping, but for the way he has handled the situation following his arrest. I think thou dost protest too much Mr. Craig.

    October 15, 2007 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  23. Jim, Plano TX

    Republicans have a tendency for harboring perverts/liars like Mark Foley (pedophile Republican), David Vitter (visited prostitiutes and denied it), Larry Craig (solicited sex from cop), Bob Allen (tried to get sex from a cop) and countless more.

    Once Republicans stop pretending to be religious, they can then get the help they need to come to terms with their frequent criminal problems.

    October 15, 2007 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  24. anon, new york, NY

    You are a disgrace not only to Romney, but also to anybody who voted for you.

    If Romney's bus ran over you, he put you out of miserty and did america a favor.

    Your current appeal to the court decision is phoney as you, the purpose of which is to allow you to say that you are not gulit to allow you to stay in the senate longer. The truth to the america public is that you are a phoney and guilty as charged.

    October 15, 2007 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  25. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Craig needs to be careful by making statements such as "he backup". Remember that song about "back that thang up". Why doesn't he just shut up and serve his time out.

    October 15, 2007 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
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