GMA Exclusive: Larry Craig's Children Speak Out

Two of the senator's children asked their father if he had ever been unfaithful.

ByABC News via logo
January 8, 2009, 1:11 AM

Sept. 4, 2007 — -- After a highly publicized arrest in a bathroom sex sting and a week spent defending his sexuality, Idaho Sen. Larry Craig announced his resignation from the Senate this weekend. He maintains his innocence, however, despite having pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct.

"Good Morning America" spoke exclusively with Craig's two children, who are standing by the Republican senator.

"He was a victim of circumstance, in the wrong place at the wrong time," said Michael Craig of his father's arrest.

Michael Craig and his sister, Shea Howell, decided to speak out about the scandal, but not before making sure that they had all the answers necessary to confidently defend their father.

Before standing in support behind the senator at Saturday's news conference, Craig and Howell asked their father tough questions. They wanted to know whether he had ever been in any way unfaithful to their mother.

"No legalities, no technicalities. We wanted to know exactly what happened," Craig said.

The senator's children have concluded that anyone else in a similar situation would have simply said "excuse me" after bumping their foot into someone and moved on. But their father bumped into an undercover police officer, who they say was looking for a different interpretation of his actions.

"It was tough standing next to him, but we are family and we stay together through good times and bad," Craig said. "We know who he is and we stand behind him."

The senator's fellow Republicans have not supported him, though he has served more than 25 years on Capitol Hill. Presidential candidate Mitt Romney called the accusations against Larry Craig "disgusting," a statement Craig's children say is the most disappointing part of the whole ordeal.

"On Capitol Hill especially, people have made their decision and formed opinion without talking to even talking to my dad," Howell said.

Craig speculated that such conclusions or hesitation could be the result of a reelection year. "Candidates are leery of being associated with my father," he said.

Howell and Craig, who maintain their father's heterosexuality, said that even if he were gay, they would still support him. "Gay or straight, that part doesn't matter," Craig said.

"My dad is so protective of us. He has seven grandkids between my sister and I. He knows he chose to be in politics. He knew what life that would entail but he didn't choose it for us."