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Dayton Daily News> WASHINGTON | Ohio Sen. Mike DeWine on Friday fired an employee believed to be the author of a Web log that has been the talk of Capitol Hill all week because it included alleged sexual exploits with a married political appointee and other men.
A statement from DeWine’s office said: “On May 18, 2004, our office became aware of allegations that an employee had been using Senate resources and work-time to post unsuitable and offensive material to an Internet Web log. After investigating these allegations, our office has determined that there was an unacceptable use of Senate computers to post unsuitable and offensive material to an Internet Web log. Other inappropriate material was found in the employee’s work area as well. The employee has been terminated.”
This week, the gossip Web site wonkette.com[editors note: a Gawker media publication], a sassy, often raunchy web log popular among Washington insiders, highlighted another Web log, or blog, supposedly written by a Capitol Hill staffer. The author, calling herself “the Washingtonienne,” wrote that she is a staff assistant in a Senate office and detailed her sexual relationships, which include, she said, getting paid to have sex with older men including a married “Chief of Staff at one of the gov agencies.”
The Web log set off a storm of speculation among Capitol Hill employees and journalists about the woman’s identity and whether her entries were true. Then, an Internet site reported that the author was an employee of DeWine, a Republican from Cedarville.
DeWine’s spokesman declined to identify the employee, or comment on the case.
“Because this is a personnel matter, our office will not name the employee or have any further comment on this issue,” said Mike Dawson, DeWine’s communications director.
The editor of wonkette.com, Ana Marie Cox, who had celebrated “Washingtonienne” and said she should seek a book deal, responded, “She’s been mistreated by a lot of older men, I guess, but at least this one people can vote against.”
During the gossip frenzy, blog Web sites actually published the names and pictures of DeWine employees, speculating on the woman’s identify. Dawson said the staff had met to discuss what happened.
“You always have concerns about people who are innocent who get (dragged) into things like this,” he said.
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