Speaker Thomas Foley strongly denies suggestions his wife is being investigated by a grand jury in connection with alleged wrongdoing at the House post office. He says there is no reason for her to give up her job as his chief of staff.
Foley, D-Wash., said Thursday his wife, Heather, appeared before the grand jury as a witness, but he complained that some news reports are wrongly suggesting her appearance means she is under investigation.The Washington Times cited unnamed sources as saying Heather Foley was "the subject of intense scrutiny" by the grand jury.
Foley, at a morning meeting of the House Democratic caucus, reportedly complained that some media coverage was "intolerable and despicable."
The grand jury is investigating allegations of theft and drug sales at the House post office. The Times has previously cited sources as claiming the speaker's wife and House Counsel Steven Ross sought to block a Capitol Police investigation of the post office.
Foley said "there's no truth to that," and that the decision had been made with his agreement to ask the U.S. Postal Service to lead the investigation, with the Capitol Police taking a secondary role. Ross has said that was done out of concern that it would appear the House was investigating itself.
"The Capitol Police were never excluded nor any evidence they obtained ever excluded from the investigation," the speaker said.
Some reports have said former Capitol Police Chief Frank Kerrigan resigned in protest last July after the investigation was turned over to the postal service, and that he may have secretly recorded a meeting with top-level House officials.
Foley said there had been "no misconduct in any way by my wife as my chief of staff relating to the post office or any other operational matter of the House of Representatives.