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Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Foley Case: Not the First Time Heather Wilson Tied to Youth Scandal Questions

UPDATE 10.20.06: In the past couple of days KOAT successfully convinced YouTube to remove the video linked above due to copyright issues. For those who didn't get a chance to view the video when it was available (for weeks if not months), read this unofficial transcript provided by someone who watched it carefully.
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Reminiscent of the still-unfolding scandal involving Rep. Mark Foley -- and what many, even on the right, see as a Republican cover-up -- is an earlier scandal involving Republican Rep. Heather Wilson (NM-01) and her husband, Jay Hone. The video above shows a KOAT-TV7 (Albuquerque) news story prompted by one of Wilson's first actions when she was appointed to head the NM Department of Children, Youth and Families. Wilson served as Department Secretary from 1995-1998. On her third day in office, she removed a sensitive department case file, which had been opened on her husband, from the agency's central records repository in Albuquerque. Although Wilson initially denied doing so, she later changed her story and admitted removing the file. In other words, she lied.

The file was opened in response to an Albuquerque police report filed in March 1993 that reportedly contained potentially damaging allegations against her husband. The file is rumored to contain information about an accusation against Hone that has to do with inappropriate contact on his part with a babysitter. Most files opened by the department in this manner are generally based on claims of sexually inappropriate contact or abuse involving minors.

In the news report, investigative journalist Larry Barker tracks down Wilson and asks her about the file. On camera, Heather denies she removed the file from the Department's central filing system and transferred it to the custody of the Department attorney who shared her Santa Fe offices. The news team reports that when Wilson learned they were going to run the story she summoned reporters to her office and finally admitted she did, in fact, remove the file to her Secretary's office in Santa Fe.

The Bernalillo County District Attorney at the time, Bob Schwartz, stated that the removal was a "highly inappropriate" act on the part of Wilson and that she should at least have filed a request under seal to a judge to get permission to move the file. Schwartz claimed Wilson had a clear conflict of interest in the matter and stated that if she had, indeed removed it, she should resign. Strangely, I can't find any evidence that the matter was pursued. At the time, Republican Gary Johnson was Governor of NM, and the matter just faded from public view. The file has evidently never been returned to the central records of the Department.

Here we have a clear case of Heather Wilson acting to hide the facts about allegations about her husband's possibly improper behavior with a minor -- no doubt to ensure they never see the light of day.

Now move forward in time to 2001, when Wilson is serving on the Page Board, which oversees the Congressional page program. Even though a page has come forward to say that Republican-appointed pages were warned that year not to respond to Rep. Foley's "friendly" overtures, Wilson claims she knew nothing about it. She served on the board from 2001 through 2004, when Foley's inappropriate emails and IMs were being sent, yet she claims she knew nothing about them. Heather Wilson was on the board charged with supervising the page program during a time when rumors were apparently making the rounds about Foley's suspect interest in the youths, but she heard none of it.

A coincidence or a pattern? You decide. But I have to ask, can Rep. Heather Wilson be trusted in matters like this after lying on camera about a similar matter in the past?

October 3, 2006 at 12:55 PM in Candidates & Races, Visuals | Permalink

Comments

Do I see a political ad here, if not I think that ought to change. Um, you know because Ms Wilson is a member of the party of higher morals and ethics, we wouldn't want anyone to WRONGLY think Ms Wilson is a liar, so, with this video it ought to confirm that she is a liar and eliminate any doubt. I am sure Ms Wilson would appreciate the honesty since she claims that she is.

Posted by: VP | Oct 3, 2006 1:42:12 PM

Lying on camera. Why am I not surprised? There have been strong rumors about what the Wilson-Hone marriage is really all about (or not about) for years. A cop I know told me that Hone grabbed the kid's butt and then claimed it was a mistake.

There are so many right wingers in the closet. It makes them do strange things. If they'd come out and be themselves they could live truthful lives with good relationships but instead they hide and sneak and lie.

Posted by: Red or Green | Oct 3, 2006 2:17:06 PM

How strange. Caught in the act on camera and yet she goes on to win a House seat. I guess people weren't paying attention or don't care. Also strange that she managed to get on the page board. Of all the Republicans in the House, why her? Because people like Foley knew she'd cover for them?

Posted by: Kossian | Oct 3, 2006 5:13:43 PM

Hmm, a pattern of looking the other way...

Wilson is a Republican.

Posted by: LP | Oct 3, 2006 6:04:35 PM

They hypocrisy is so heavy with these Republicans. They like to call themselves the party of accountability but when something happens they are all out there asap trying to put the blame on someone else. Over the last few days we've had their so called leaders blaming the teens, blaming the media, blaming Democrats and blaming each other. Gee why would anyone expect someone on the page board to be accountable for knowing what's going on with the pages?

There's no question that Hastert and other Republicans knew about this situation over a year ago and did nothing and there is much to suggest they knew about Foley and his sick fondness for the pages years before that.

Posted by: Old Dem | Oct 4, 2006 9:09:53 AM

Tar and Feather Wilson!

Posted by: Post American | Oct 6, 2006 6:54:37 AM

What can you say? Let's hear it for "We will not lie, steal or cheat – nor tolerate among us anyone who does." But let's complete it by adding: "unless their name is Jay Hone and I'm married to him, and unless it is a member of the Republican party."

Posted by: Zorro for Democrats | Oct 9, 2006 2:10:42 AM

RAW acquires police report Congresswoman accused of stealing; Husband accused of touching boy inappropriately
http://www.rawstory.com/news/2006/Congresswoman_on_page_board_buried_file_1019.html
Wilson also currently serves on the Congressional Missing and Exploited Children's caucus.

Posted by: Post American | Oct 19, 2006 2:37:00 PM

That's funny--the video is no longer available. Did one of Heather's people have it scrubbed from youtube?

Posted by: nikraye | Oct 19, 2006 3:49:37 PM

Send this to Keith Olbermann!

Posted by: Echo | Oct 19, 2006 4:35:46 PM

So, Heather sneaked out her husbands file from CYFD and got caught; told a lie on TV denying then came clean when cornered. About taking the file - not about the contents. I saw it at the time (In '95)

There's more. So last week I called Larry barker who did the original story who is at 13KQRE now but was at 07KOAT when it ran. He said that everything was divulged in the story (untrue) and it was old news - nothing pertinent to now, no he would not say what it was and he doubted the tape existed - that wasn't his station. Old news. Nothing to see. Move along.

BUT there is MORE

Heather came out here to marry Jay Hone in 1991. He had a young male foster child (as a single Male(?) how rare is that). this info comes from one of heather's site but I could't find the line again.

Heather Wilson is married to Jay Hone, an Albuquerque attorney. They have one adult son, Scott Hone, and two younger children, Joshua and Caitlin Hone.

http://wilson.house.gov/NewsAction.asp?
FormMode=Neighbors&ID=46 or http://wilson.house.gov/Bio.asp

Now If Jay Hone had a foster file, there was more in the folder than a police report.

The adult, adopted, former foster child, Scott Hone, has never been seen and does not live around here.

Hmmmmmm Want more?

Posted by: sam d dobermann | Oct 19, 2006 8:55:01 PM

"Now If Jay Hone had a foster" child, not file.
CYFD files on foster child should have quite a few reports.

Oh yes, an attorney has to seek appointments from the court to be appointed as guardian ad litem to represent the interests of the child.

So for how many boys was Jay Hone the Attorney? They are usually sealed records.

Posted by: sam d dobermann | Oct 19, 2006 9:07:29 PM

You might consider filing a DMCA counter-notification. See Chilling Effects DMCA resources and build-your-own counter-notification form.

Posted by: Wendy Seltzer | Oct 20, 2006 2:26:06 PM

Now that DKos has an update on the story and we get to see the content of the file that Wilson took out, two things become clear. The allegation is fairly minor and could easily have been a misuderstanding. Had the file remained untouched, nothing would have come out of it. Hone would have appeared with the "kid" at some campaign event 6-7 years ago and the kid would have explained how nothing really happened and Hone was just reaching for the pizza, accidentally brushing against his butt--quite plausible, for all I care. But it is the second part that should have Wilson in hot water--it is absolutely irrelevant if there was any damaging info in the file or not. She covered it up and stole government documents. My first question would be, does she have access to classified information? Second, she was on the page board, but did she know anything about Foley? (She claimed she didn't--at least, when asked about the LAST set of emails. No one asked her about the earlier problems with Foley, as far as I know.)

Aside from John Elliot, I have not heard any national source mention this story. I wonder how it's playing in NM.

Posted by: buck turgidson | Oct 28, 2006 10:42:58 PM