The muddled, panicked GOP response to Foleygate makes a lot more sense if you consider the possibility that everything said by every GOP operative is directed to an audience of one person, and that one person is Dr. James Dobson.
That doesn't mean that every Republican thinks like Dobson. In fact, the opposite is true, and that's part of the problem.
The Republican leadership knows it can't hang on to power without the support of the American Taliban –– but it doesn't care anything about the social conservative agenda. So it lies to them just like it lies to everyone else who isn't among the 10,000 wealthiest Americans. In this case, though, it's blown up in their faces. And the reason the GOP leadership is furious with Hastert isn't because he didn't do something about Foley, but because he offended Dr. Dobson and jeopardized the Republican hold on power.
Foley gave in to his own sexual fantasies, which was bad enough, but Hastert played the social conservatives for fools by letting it go on, and Dobson and his morality police know it.
The quid pro quo the fundamentalists have with the Republican leadership is this: enforce our sexual mores on the public, and we'll look the other way while you steal and graft and lie. But Foleygate reveals Hastert hasn't kept up his end of the bargain.
The only power social conservatives have over the senior GOP leadership is to withhold followers' Election Day votes, thereby slamming the government cookie jar lid down on the senior Republicans' pudgy little hands.
So what will the Republican leadership do to placate the Great Moralizer of Colorado Springs? Will they vote Hastert off the island? Conduct a purge of the newly-rumored 'secret Republican gay cabal'?