Portland police are reportedly re-examining a local massage therapist's accusations of sexual assault against Al Gore. They had previously dismissed the allegations due to lack of evidence, but are now reopening the investigation without explanation following National Enquirer coverage of the matter.
Why? And is this making those who first laughed the story off reconsider?
- Because of the National Enquirer Coverage? The police didn't "explain why the case was being re-opened," writes Annie Groer at Politics Daily, but "in the past seven days, the allegations by masseuse Molly Hagerty, 54, have been trumpeted in a pair of National Enquirer stories."
- No New Evidence Released "Well it certainly seems like National Enquirer coverage has stirred the pot," says Jeffrey Toobin on CNN. He comments, though, that it's strange that "the police have only released [the massage therapist's] statement, not all the things you would do if you were a police department investigating something like that: corroborating evidence, other witnesses, DNA evidence. We don't know if any of that existed or which side it helps."
- Fact: No One Knows Why "Police in Portland will re-investigate 2006 sexual abuse allegations against Nobel Peace Prize-winner Al Gore," reads Juli Weiner's matter-of-fact summary of the news Vanity Fair. "Authorities did not indicate why they are doing so, though this will likely not stop everyone from trying to guess."
- 'Perhaps This Is More Serious Than I Thought,' admits Hot Air's Allahpundit, who prior to the announcement remained, as the passage below shows, thoroughly unconvinced:
Even avowed lefty and Keith Olbermann fan Tommy Christopher concedes that "things don't look good for Al Gore here." So why am I still skeptical to the point of incredulity that anything happened? Well, (a) if it did, then that Taiwanese animation will haunt my dreams forever, and (b) a sex scandal involving Al Gore is like a sex scandal involving Data from "Star Trek."
- Ditto "Of course, let's be fair, Hagerty [the massage therapist] could be full of it," writes William Teach at Stop the ACLU. "I have to wonder, though, is she dumb enough to push this issue, which has landed on the international stage, considering Gore's status on globull warming [sic] ... Because, if she is proven wrong, the Portland police will have to prosecute her, and she will go to jail."
- Gore Statement Defiant Talking Points Memo's Justin Elliott passes along the statement from Gore spokeswoman Kalee Kreider, which says that "further investigation into this matter will only benefit Mr. Gore," and that"the Gores cannot comment on every defamatory, misleading, and inaccurate story generated by tabloids."
- Loving the National Enquirer Lately "I guess I'm going to have to start reading the National Enquirer more often simply to keep up on Democrat Party politics, the failed state of climate science and the latest on Oscar winners," smirks conservative blogger Dan Riehl. "It's like The Hill, National Geographic and People all rolled into one."