Tags: massa | beck | emanuel | fox | healthcare | hoyer | pelosi

Massa to Appear on Glenn Beck as Story Rocks Nation

Tuesday, 09 Mar 2010 12:33 PM

Just a day after triggering a political firestorm with accusations he was forced out of office because he rebelled against his fellow House Democrats’ healthcare plan, former New York Rep. Eric J.J. Massa will take his story to "The Glenn Beck Program" on Fox News tonight.

Beck said Monday he will devote a full-hour to an interview with Massa. The show airs at 5 p.m. EST and 2 a.m. on the Fox News Channel.

"I'm not saying he's, you know, pure as a driven snow. I don't know. I don't know the guy," Beck said of Massa in a video clip from Fox News. "But this is a moment that will decide the course of this nation, possibly."

Editor's Note: See Glenn Beck discuss the Massa case below

Beck said he called Massa at his home and spoke with him off-air shortly after he left office Monday, according to the Buffalo News.

Massa, who is facing a harassment complaint from a male staffer who said the lawmaker made lewd advances toward him at a wedding party, said Sunday that Democratic leaders will "stop at nothing" to advance the healthcare bill. Massa voted against the legislation last year.

Massa has given three explanations for leaving office. Last week, he said he would not seek re-election because of health problems.

Massa was one of 39 Democrats who voted against an earlier House version of the healthcare bill in November. His departure reduces the majority House Speaker Nancy Pelosi needs for passage of healthcare legislation to 216.

Massa was the talk of Washington Monday after he made allegations Sunday on a Hornell, New York radio station that he was "set up" to fall so that House Democrats would have an easier path to passing healthcare reform.

"Mine is now the deciding vote on the healthcare bill," said Massa, who consistently has opposed the Democratic health plan. "And this administration and this House leadership have said — quote, unquote — they will stop at nothing to pass this healthcare bill. And now they've gotten rid of me, and it will pass. You connect the dots."

Massa singled out White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel for his ouster. The two had been known to have had frequent skirmishes over healthcare and other issues over the last year.

He called the top Obama adviser "the son of the devil's spawn."

"He is an individual who would sell his mother to get a vote. He would strap his children to the front end of a steam locomotive," Massa said of Emanuel's desire to lock up vital votes on healthcare reform.

"You think that somehow they didn't come after me to get rid of me because my vote is the deciding vote in the healthcare bill? Then, ladies and gentlemen, you live today in a world that is so innocent as to not understand what's going on in Washington, D.C."

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs, on ABC's "Good Morning America" today, said of Massa's charges: "I think this whole story is ridiculous. I think the latest excuse is silly and ridiculous."

Massa also accused House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer of "lying" in a statement in which the majority leader's office said Hoyer would have contacted the ethics committee about the allegations against Massa if Massa's staff had not done so itself.

A spokeswoman for Hoyer, D-Md., Katie Grant, vehemently denied Massa's claim.

"That's completely false," Grant said.

Massa was the second Democrat in a week to be hit by damaging ethics questions, and his departure is a further embarrassment for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who had pledged to create "the most honest, most open and most ethical Congress in history."

Republicans have ridiculed Pelosi over this week's ethics revelations, saying the behavior of Democrats had made a mockery of her promise to clean up Congress.

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