WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Embattled Idaho Sen. Larry Craig emphatically denied new allegations of homosexual encounters published in his home state's largest newspaper Sunday, calling the statements of four new accusers "completely false."
Craig, pictured here in August, calls the statements of four new accusers "completely false."
The Boise-based Idaho Statesman identified four men who have gone public with claims they either had sex with the veteran senator or that he made sexual advances toward them in incidents dating back to the 1980s.
The men describe their encounters with Craig, R-Idaho, in detail. But the Statesman said it had no physical evidence to back up its reporting and described the claims as "he-said, he-said allegations."
"Like its previous coverage, these latest allegations are completely false and have no basis in reality," Craig said in a statement issued by his office. "In fact, the paper itself states that these baseless accusations contain no definitive evidence, yet they still decided to print them anyway."
Craig pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor disorderly conduct charge in August, two months after his arrest in a sex sting at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. He announced plans to resign after his arrest became public, and has called the guilty plea a mistake.
After announcing plans to resign, Craig decided to remain in office to defend his conduct before the Senate Ethics Committee and has asked Minnesota courts to let him withdraw his plea. But he said he will not seek a new term in 2008.
"Despite the fact the Idaho Statesman has decided to pursue its own agenda and print these falsehoods without any facts to back them up, I won't let this paper's attempt to malign my name stop me from continuing my work to serve the people of Idaho," he said.
Police accused the senator of making sexual advances toward an undercover officer in a men's room at the airport, and Craig said he pleaded guilty without consulting an attorney because the Statesman had been investigating rumors about his sexuality. At an emotional news conference August 28, he declared, "I am not gay. I have never been gay." E-mail to a friend