An update on the Ensign affair

Earlier today, my fellow contributor AL wrote about the affair Sen. John Ensign of Nevada admitted to having with the wife of one of Ensign’s Senate staffers. Putting aside the hypocrisy of Sen. Ensign having an affair while a member of Promise Keepers, or the hypocrisy of Sen. Ensign attacking others for having dalliances outside their marriages, there’s the very serious issue of whether hush money was paid to the husband of the woman Sen. Ensign had an affair with. According to Politico, Doug Hampton, the husband of the woman Sen. Ensign had an affair with, was paid about $101,000 for four months of work 2008, a far higher monthly rate than he was previously paid. In fact, Doug Hampton made $144,000 in all of 2007.

I’m not saying hush money was paid to Doug Hampton, but it’s worth noting that some initial reports of the affair by Sen. Ensign indicated he only went public with the affair after being approached for money by Doug Hampton. Sen. Ensign was widely seen as a rising star within the Republican Party – perhaps even holding presidential aspirations – but if he did in fact make a payoff to Doug Hampton or his family, it’s safe to say Sen. Ensign will have a hard time gaining any traction if he does choose to run for president.


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6 thoughts on “An update on the Ensign affair

    1. What I read was that the husband approached Sen. Ensign asking for money in exchange for not releasing the details of the affair. What’s really disturbing to me is the fact that the husband made more money in four months after the affair than he did the entire year before the affair.

  1. Your quick to point the finger — what about Clinton’s affair, or should I say affairs while in public office. That almost cost his job because he couldn’t tell the truth to Congress.

    I liked Clinton, a lot, but if you can’t be man enough like this guy was and say “hey, I screwed up, I had the affair” that doesn’t make him a man at all, it makes him cowardly. This guy is probably sleeping in the dog house tonight, and will probably be living at a hotel tomorrow.

    just out of curiosity, what type of work was this Doug Hampton guy in? I’m sure on Obama’s campaign, guys like Eric Schmidt (CEO of Google) and Paul Volcker (Former Chairman of the Fed) were probably paid handsomely for their work as economic advisors. They’re smart no question, but let’s look at all the details before throwing a comment out like blackmail.

    1. Mike, at the time of Sen. Ensign’s affair with Doug Hampton’s wife, Doug Hampton was actually working as a top-level staffer in Sen. Ensign’s Senate office.

  2. Mike: it’s “you’re”, not “your”. But more importantly, I don’t see anyone here calling on Ensign to resign. The point is you have folks of a certain ideological persuasion who love to get on their holier-than-thou high horse and preach “morals” to us heathens (Clinton not being one of those guys – so no real “hypocricy” there), but yet those same people seem to constantly keep coming up in these morality scandals, whether it’s Ted Haggard, Larry Craig, Diaper David Vitter, Mark Foley, etc. etc.

    I guess what I’m really wondering is: shouldn’t the gay-married folks in Iowa, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massechusetts, and Conneticut feel ashamed of themselves for ruining John Ensign’s marriage?!

  3. Ugh, not another slimy money-for-sex political scandal. You usually can’t prosecute people for having low morals. Pity, too. And yes, it’s an equal-opportunity morass.

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