So you've seen therealedmartin.com
, the website implying that congressional candidate Ed Martin knew about "pedophile priests" being shuffled around from parish to parish, but failed to do anything about it.
But how did this website come about? It's a very interesting question.
"This has not been -- in any way, shape, or form -- coordinated or organized by the Carnahan campaign," says Michael Corwin
, a private investigator based in New Mexico.
Yet Corwin says he's done opposition research for the Democratic party before -- even on other Democrats in primaries.
Corwin says he was asked to do research on Ed Martin through a media company hired by Team Carnahan. When he discovered what he perceived to be a nexus between Martin, the Curia (a deliberative body within the Archdiocese), and pedophile priests, however, he says that Carnahan's staff decided to pass on it because "they didn't want to alienate the Catholic vote."
So, Corwin says, he severed ties with the democrat's campaign and teamed up with journalist Jeannine Dillon
to pursue the story independently.
"We [were] donating huge amounts of time and all these expenditures out of pocket" to work on the it, Corwin says. (One of the pair's previous collaborations
appeared on Dateline NBC
and won the prestigious Edward R. Murrow award.) John Scorfina
, a clergy abuse victim whose video interview appears on the site, remembers the day the camera crew showed up to interview him. He tells Daily RFT
I literally knew these people for three hours. What I was told was that they were focusing on the Curia. They were focusing on the members of the Curia. But did I know actually anyone who was in the Curia? No.
They came and said there's a secret board. I said, 'If I can save one kid, let's do it.'
Do I know anything about politics? No. Do I know whoever the guy [Ed Martin] is? No. But it so happens he's a member. And he's an attorney-at-law and he can't dispute the fact that he knew what was going on.
I haven't seen [the video]. All I know is the focus was on the special panel called the curia. And they wanted to uncover it and save kids.
I don't care what it does to me emotionally, as long as one person doesn't have to be me. I hope it makes some type of wave. I hope it does something for somebody.
The video has certainly done one thing: It's put Martin on the defensive, and turned the political conversation to whether Martin knew pedophile priests were being shuffled around during his tenure at the Archdiocese. Martin denies the charge.
Says Corwin: "Would've I have been there if [Martin] hadn't been running for Congress? Probably not."