Larry Craig Invites You To Adoption Gala
You may think Sen. Larry Craig (R-Idaho) wouldn't be the poster boy for too many charity balls, what with his arrest and guilty plea in connection with an airport men's room sex sting and his GOP colleagues having turned against him.
But Craig's name is prominently displayed on invitations that arrived in the mail this week for the upcoming annual "Angels in Adoption" Gala hosted by the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute.
The Oct. 4 event is billed as "this year's single most significant congressional event pertaining to child welfare in the United States," according to the invitation.
Singer Patti LaBelle, Miami Heat basketball star Alonzo Mourning and celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson are listed as the three main celebrity participants of the gala. And Craig, an adoptive father of three, is still listed as a congressional co-chair and member of the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute's board of directors. (Click here to watch video of Craig's adoptive children talking about the bathroom scandal on ABC's "Good Morning America.")
"The first thing I saw when I opened the invitation was Larry Craig's name," one GOP mover and shaker tells the Sleuth.
Besides Craig, the other congressional co-chairs listed on the invitation are: Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) and Reps. Ginny Brown-Waite (R-Fla.) and James Oberstar (D-Minn.), all three of whom also serve on CCAI's board of directors.
Presumably, and non-controversially, the three of them will attend the Oct. 4 gala as usual. But will Craig, considering that he may well have resigned by that time?
We just heard from Craig's spokesman, Dan Whiting, who said the senator will not be attending the gala. But he said Craig applauds CCAI's "spectacular work for adoption and foster care" and that the senator "will continue to support their efforts as much as possible."
Whiting said Thursday that the senator "expects to resign" even though he's leaving a "very, very small" door "slightly ajar" while he fights to have his guilty plea rescinded.
And after initally declining to comment this morning, the executive director of the Congressional Coalition on Adoption, Deanna Carlson Stacy, announced this afternoon that Craig has resigned as a congressional director of the institute.
"The invitations to our annual Gala had already been in process as this decision was being made," she said in a statement, adding, "The Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute thanks Senator Craig for his leadership and dedication to the cause during his service as a Co-Chair of the Adoption Caucus and as a Congressional Director of the Institute."
Craig's resignation from the organization is a telling sign that he may be resigning from the Senate sooner rather than later.
Mary Ann Akers
September 7, 2007; 2:28 PM ET
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