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Congressional connections

Brief by Central Staff

Politics – October 2001 – Colorado Central Magazine

Rep. Gary Condit of California’s 18th Congressional District has been much in the news lately after the May disappearance of Chandra Levy, an intern from his district with whom he was having an affair. (Her internship was not in his office, but with the federal Bureau of Prisons.)

We note that he represents the only other Salida in the United States — Salida, California, a suburb of Modesto in the Central Valley and home to some almond-processing plants.

As for the congressman who represents our Salida, Scott McInnis of Grand Junction, he’s been getting national attention after calling for a federal law to prohibit sexual relationships between congressmen and interns.

Now, to quote from Jonathan Sikes in the Aug. 9 edition of the Denver weekly Westword. “All this puritanical posturing has raised eyebrows among Colorado politicos who’ve known McInnis for a while and remember his reputation as a ladies’ man when he was a single lawmaker in the Colorado General Assembly. ‘When I read in the paper that he’s now a devout Catholic, I couldn’t believe it,’ says one former legislative staffer who worked at the statehouse in the 1980s. ‘He was young and frisky, and he developed a bit of a reputation.’ McInnis’s eye for interns was so notorious …”

Of course, McInnis was single at the time. Therefore, even though his conduct may have been foolish, it hardly seems scandalous. Yet the federal law he proposes could make similar behavior illegal.