September 10th, 2007
01:00 PM ET
15 years ago

Majority says Craig should stick with resignation

Craig announced September 1 he planned to resign his post at the end of the month.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - On the same day that lawyers for Sen. Larry Craig formally seek to withdraw his misdemeanor guilty plea, a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll indicates an overwhelming majority of Americans think the Idaho Republican should stick with his decision to resign.

According to the poll released Monday, 67 percent of Americans think Craig should resign, while only 26 percent say he should hold on to his seat. Solid majorities of both Republicans and Democrats said that the embattled Idaho senator should go. 7 percent said they were unsure.

The poll, conduced on September 7-9, surveyed 1,017 Americans and carries a margin of error of plus or minus three percentage points.

Craig, 62, announced September 1 that he would resign at the end of the month. He then appeared to backtrack a bit when he told Senate leaders last week that he would remain in office if he is able to get the plea overturned.

Craig's court papers will argue that the senator essentially pleaded guilty to facts that did not constitute a crime, said a source with knowledge of the case. The source, who asked for anonymity because the pleadings had not yet been filed, told CNN on Sunday that Craig waived his rights to trial and counsel and never saw a judge before entering a plea by mail.

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Related: Attorney: Stress from investigation made Craig plead guilty

Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (19 Responses)
  1. Frank Troha, Wilton Manors Florida

    I do not recall a mention of who Larry Craig was meeting at the airport to cause him to be there. Was he dropping off someone, picking someone up, or visiting the airport to make use of that particular rest room?

    September 10, 2007 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  2. Jon, Sacramento ~ Ca

    CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll indicates an overwhelming majority of Americans think the Idaho Republican should stick with his decision to resign.

    – – – – – – –

    Who cares what the majority of Americans think? This guy is a Senator from Idaho – the only thing which matters is what the people of IDAHO think.

    This is such a non-issue, one wonders why CNN continues to push it??

    September 10, 2007 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  3. pl. at the UN for a while.

    Ok, I acknowledge that in most of the world there is a stigma attached to rumors of being gay. America is no exception. Fine.

    I think that it is overdue that Mr Craig seek a reversal of the guilty plea. Put that in the hand of experts. Is the best strategy. Good.

    What is neither fine nor good is that Mr Craig's main purpose is to prove that he is not gay. That is a character failure and a shame for the nation. Mr Craig is saying: "Listen you gays and lesbians out there, you are sick. I am not one of you". He is judging and accusing...who?...those who have the good sense of doing it in their bedrooms rather than a public washroom?

    September 10, 2007 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  4. Sar Casm, Dallas Tx

    The good Senator was stressed?! Well golly, I had no idea that the subject of a criminal investigation might feel stress!! I certainly hope police departments across the country take note that arresting criminals caught in the act should be a stress-free experience for all concerned. I vote we start giving our criminals shoulder massages and pedicures so they can be nice and relaxed when they plead guilty to their crimes.

    September 10, 2007 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  5. Rose, Cleveland, OH

    Sen. Craig- admit your gay and the public will support you- keep lying and the public will not. You are a joke – if you did not do it- why would you ever plead guilty. Come on!

    September 10, 2007 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  6. Donnie Davison, East Falmouth, MA

    How long will we continue to let this clown be yet another irrelevant distraction that we just don't need? If he can't abide being held accountable to his actions, perhaps he should focus on some other sort of sexual perversion that he can practice in private. You've had a nice long feed at the trough, Larry - please just GO AWAY and leave us alone!

    September 10, 2007 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  7. Anonymous

    I think that the american public should concentrate on bigger issues ... Get a life and realize that if we start judging our government on what they may or may not be, lets start at the top and clean house

    September 10, 2007 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  8. Richard, West Palm Beach, FL

    Poll: How many times in your life has someone slid their feet into a bathroom stall and touched yours? If you accidentally touched someone's feet in another stall, would you be embarassed and apologize or say not a word? Sitting with your pants pulled to your ankles, how far can you separate your feet? Sitting with your pants pulled to your knees, how far can you separate your feet and how comfortable is it in that position? Is 6 weeks enough time to figure out if you will talk to a lawyer or enter a well-thought out plea? Are four other previous charges of homosexual activity all lies? Do you believe that the Minnesota police officer totally lied about seeing a left hand with an identifiable ring on it? Do you find the comment "Bill Clinton is probably even a nasty, bad, naughty boy” to be creepy?

    September 10, 2007 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  9. Monica - Oakland, CA

    Dear Senator Craig:

    Stick a fork in it and call it done. While I am inclined to agree that the charges are flimsy (I mean, you got busted for what amounts, in basic terms to flirting or trying to pick up another guy in the men's room ), and while it is true that any wannabe lawyer could have gotten the charges DROPPED, you still pleaded guilty to some form of misconduct surrounding this issue, and, weeks and weeks after the fact you want to pull it back.....nah. Let this one go. Write a book or join some sort of political think tank, or whatever ex-politicians do to earn money or keep working. You've served your country and yourself......time to move on. Spend time mending relationships with your family and just go on to the next thing. You're forgiven, okay???? But the American people, already war-weary, are scandal weary as well. We forgive you, now we'd just like to forget this whole mess.

    September 10, 2007 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  10. DJ, los angeles

    Can't he make up mind already? First he can't figure out whether or not to plead guilty?

    Now he can't even stick with his announcement to retire?


    September 10, 2007 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  11. Alice Newman Center Harbor NH

    Anyone notice that most of those posting in support of Craig are from the same family ... all "Posted By Anonymous" No guts. Like any unsigned mail, it should be dropped in the circular file.

    September 10, 2007 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  12. Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario

    I can certainly understand why Senator Craig would plead guilty. A friend of mine resigned from her position for something she had not done to avoid stress for the family, cost of a lawyer, and the time to resolve the issue through the court system.

    September 10, 2007 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  13. greggormendall

    Senator Craig,
    First, you should know that I am an independent voter with a tendency to vote for Democratic canidates.
    I believe that you have been railroaded by the press. Whatever the realities of your situations happen to be, I feel that the members of the press who jumped on this incident with such fervor should turn in their credentials for not pursuing important events involving circumstance that affect all Americans and not just few homophobic bigots.
    By the way, I'm not gay either.

    Good luck, and keep fighting!

    September 10, 2007 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  14. Foot See

    Senator Craig,
    It is okay to be gay and married; it's quite the trend these days...perhaps renting some Oprah videos will calm you down. Admit your faults and had over a month to think about your non-guilty action.

    September 10, 2007 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  15. Jeff, minneapolis, MN

    Who cares what the majority of Americans think? I do. The last time I checked Sen. Craig was just that, a US Senator, not member of the of the Idaho state congress. He is Idaho's represenative to the US Congress, to conduct business for all the US. That makes it my and your business. And as one of the most vocal critics of Bill Clinton's scandal, I find it just a bit ironic.

    September 10, 2007 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  16. Nann, Greenville , Sc

    Mr Craig is most likely a bisexual. That is not a crime. However, when he said he had a wide stance, that was an outrageous excuse. He should resign & stay resigned

    September 10, 2007 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  17. Tomas, St. Paul

    Sen. Arlen Specter: "He thought that this matter would not be publicly disclosed, and that was very foolish,...Now look here, you have 27 years in the Congress, you have his reputation, you have his whole life on the line. I think he's entitled to his day in court. Maybe he will be convicted, but I doubt it."

    Sen. Specter either doesn't get it, or, more likely, is trying to obfuscate. For most of us, it's not about whether he is "guilty" in the legal sense of the word. His actions, as documented by the police, give the whole story: He's an anti-gay Senator who was soliciting sex. Whether he is convicted of breaking a law is immaterial. If it had been revealed that he asked another man for sex in his own home, the reaction would still be the same. His fellow right-wingers would call him gay and demand he resign, and everyone else would recognize and dismiss him for the hypocrite he is.

    September 10, 2007 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  18. Mary, Beaver, PA

    For once I agree with Jon of Sacramento. Whether Craig stays in the Senate is Idaho's concern. Personally, I don't care whether Craig is gay, bisexual, or whatever. I don't even care if he is a homophobe. I do care, however, about individual liberty, because it is the underlying ideal of this Republic. Gays and lesbians have a right to the pursuit of happiness as much as anyone. However, liberty must always be matched by responsibility, and making passes in the stalls of a public restroom goes beyond the bounds of what is appropriate and is in itself an irresponsible act. If Craig is guilty, he surely must be exposed for the hypocrite he is.

    September 11, 2007 07:58 am at 7:58 am |
  19. David, Gilbert Arizona

    So Craig tapped his foot in a public stall, which may have touched the foot of the person in the stall next to him. That isn't illegal folks. Creepy? Yes. Illegal? No. Even if Craig is gay fine, being gay isn't illegal either.

    What gets me most about this whole affair is just how poorly Craig has handled it. The entire escapade has done nothing but make him look stupid.

    In his own words he pleaded guilty to the lesser charge is order for the matter to be resolved quickly. Why? Because he didn't want the media running with a story he might be gay. Who cares? Be gay. It isn't a crime. Craig comes across as one of the worst homophobes on record. The more he pleads his case to more it looks like he is gay. So either shut it or be gay.

    Everything he has done up to this point is mitigate the story that he might be gay and in so doing has only made it worse.

    Craig should resign not for being gay. He should resign because he's stupid. If he bungled his own legal case this bad what makes people think he makes a good law maker?

    But then it really doesn't matter what you or I think unless we vote in Idaho, which I don't.

    September 11, 2007 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |