It’s the audio that weighed most on Poor’s mind.
In his short piece Poor suggests that Frank may have passed gas on air. Asked if any ethics discussions on writing that a congressman potentially “let one rip,” as he put it in his piece, Poor replied, “No ethics issues raised as far as I can tell.” He told us that his colleague, CJ Ciaramella, phoned Frank’s office and left a message. No response was forthcoming.
Even HuffPost‘s Sam Stein noticed the story: “Daily Caller reports out whether Barney Frank farted on TV, best line: “Frank could not be reached for comment,” he wrote on Twitter.
We, of course, listened to the footage and a sound can be detected, but no, we would not bet our lives that this was a gaseous Frank on the loose as opposed to an audio mishap. Did it happen? You decide.
UPDATE: We grilled Ciaramella about phoning Frank’s office. He explained that he left a message to confirm a quote. So no mention of the er, purported wind? “No, I just asked to confirm a quote, which, y’know, is pretty much the truth,” he told FishbowlDC. ‘I didn’t think I’d get a return call if I asked straight-up:”Wondering if Rep. Frank farted on-air last night. Holler back.’” Asked whether he personally believes the congressman passed gas or not, he said, “Now, I’m an objective journalist, so I can’t speak to the veracity of the alleged fart. I’ll leave that up to the readers. I will say I’ve
watched the video many times, and it’s hard to determine. Rep. Frank
could have good recourse to the ‘it was the chair’ defense.”