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Did Party Affiliation Have Anything to do With Revelations in Foley Scandal?

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Democratic Source

The Washington Post acknowledged today that one of its sources for sexually charged computer messages from former Florida Congressman Mark Foley was a former page who supports the Democratic party. The Post writes that its source — and the former page who talked to ABC News — might not have come forward had democratic operatives not divulged less sordid e-mails upon which the original stories were based. The Post also reports Democratic sources spent months circulating those less explicit messages from Foley before they became public almost two weeks ago.

Also today a reporter for Harper's magazine — a left-learning publication — said a Democratic operative provided him with some of Foley's e-mails back in May. Both publications say many news organizations declined to go public with the Foley e-mails for months — until ABC News did so on its Web site, which triggered the release of the explicit computer messages that caused Foley to resign in disgrace.

Chappaquiddick Reference

Connecticut Republican Congressman Chris Shays is invoking the infamous Chappaquiddick episode in ripping Ted Kennedy — following Kennedy's appearance at a fundraiser for Shays's democratic opponent — who has called for House Speaker Dennis Hastert to resign over the Foley scandal.

Shays says Hastert "didn't kill anybody" — a reference to the 1969 incident in which a young Kennedy campaign worker died. Shays told the Hartford Courant: "I know the speaker didn't go over a bridge and leave a young person in the water, and then have a press conference the next day."

Kennedy's office said the statement makes clear the need for change in November. Shays's opponent, Diane Farrell, said of her own reaction when she heard of the congressman's comments, "my jaw dropped."

"Opportunities to Snipe"

The public editor for The New York Times says the paper's Supreme Court reporter crossed the line in her comments slamming the Bush administration last summer at Harvard. Linda Greenhouse said the U.S. has abandoned the rule of law, attacked women's rights and supported religious fundamentalism.

Editor Byron Calame acknowledges the reaction by the Times "has been muted so far." And he says that allowing greenhouse to cover Supreme Court issues involving the topics she discussed gives the paper's critics "fresh opportunities to snipe at its public policy coverage."

Save the Cockroaches

The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is broadening its portfolio to include —- cockroaches. PETA is calling on the Six Flags theme parks to cancel a proposed competition in which people will try to break the world record for eating live Madagascar hissing cockroaches, which can be up to three inches in length.

PETA says insects do not deserve to be eaten alive for the Halloween marketing gimmick and that it's been flooded with protests. But a Six Flags spokesman says the only complaints so far have been from people who didn't get a chance to sign up for the contest. The world record for eating cockroaches is 36 in one minute. Anyone who beats that gets a season pass for four people for next year. If you eat just one — you can get in once free.

—FOX News Channel's Aaron Bruns contributed to this report.

With more than 35 years of journalism experience to draw from, Brit Hume currently serves as a senior political analyst for FOX News Channel (FNC) and contributes to all major political coverage. Hume also is regular panelist on FOX's weekly public affairs program, "FOX News Sunday."