Aw, heck, no we don't. Told ya:
VIRGINIA BEACH, Oct. 7 — As word of Representative Mark Foley’s sexually explicit e-mail messages to former pages spread last week, Republican strategists worried — and Democrats hoped — that the sordid nature of the scandal would discourage conservative Christians from going to the polls.
But in dozens of interviews here in southeastern Virginia, a conservative Christian stronghold that is a battleground in races for the House and Senate, many said the episode only reinforced their reasons to vote for their two Republican incumbents in neck-and-neck re-election fights, Representative Thelma Drake and Senator George Allen.
“This is Foley’s lifestyle,” said Ron Gwaltney, a home builder, as he waited with his family outside a Christian rock concert last Thursday in Norfolk. “He tried to keep it quiet from his family and his voters. He is responsible for what he did. He is paying a price for what he did. I am not sure how much farther it needs to go.”
The Democratic Party is “the party that is tolerant of, maybe more so than Republicans, that lifestyle,” Mr. Gwaltney said, referring to homosexuality.
Most of the evangelical Christians interviewed said that so far they saw Mr. Foley’s behavior as a matter of personal morality, not institutional dysfunction.
All said the question of broader responsibility had quickly devolved into a storm of partisan charges and countercharges. And all insisted the episode would have little impact on their intentions to vote.
It is too soon to tell if the scandal will affect the turnout of evangelical Christians, who make up about a quarter of the electorate and more than a third of Republican voters. Some of President Bush’s political advisers have said that pre-election reports in 2000 that Mr. Bush was once arrested for drunken driving depressed turnout among conservative Christians, nearly costing him the White House.
If the New York Times is reporting this, it is an indication of the magnitude of the backfire the Democrats have brought on themselves. You can bet it's actually even worse for the Dems than the NYT is reporting. The carnival barkers made a major error.