DING DONG! TOM DELAY PREPARES FOR FEDERAL PRISON BY RESIGNING FROM CONGRESS AND MOVING TO VIRGINIA
Tom DeLay once held an iron grip of power over the Republican Congress. His incredibly reactionary and extremist narrow-minded agenda became official GOP policy and the Little Bug Man's stain on the Republican Party is as odious as George Bush's. His fall was fast and furious. After being forced out of the Majority Leader role, he has seen his empire fall to pieces and he has seen himself blamed for everything that has gone wrong with the GOP.
Although only weeks ago, the nutcases in TX-22 renominated The Hammer for another term, tonight he announced he would not be eligible because he is now a resident of Virginia and that he would soon resign from his House seat. He is likely to face a very long prison term very soon as more and more of his closest cronies and staffers turn state's evidence against him in numerous cases.
Cowardly and weak DeLay looked at his abysmal polling and that he realized he had virtually no chance whatsoever to win against Democrat Nick Lampson. His troops are completely demoralized by all the recent defections and he couldn't stomach a losing race. On top of that, it looks likely that he would be indicted on at least 3 more serious counts even before November. TIME Magazine sat down with DeLay and his moll to talk about why he decided to cut and run so ignominously. The interview-- though filled with DeLay's typical blatant lies and his failure to recognize or accept reality-- is stunning and a must-read.
As DeLay tries to slink off where no light shines, he leaves a wrecked Republican Party, a congressional caucus that followed him blindly-- gorging pigs at a trough. He won't be the last of the Culture of Corruption leaders to leave Washington in utter disgrace-- nor the last to contemplate a life behind bars.
9:30PM UPDATE: CHRIS BELL WAS THE DEMOCRATIC HERO WHO GOT THE BALL ROLLING. HERE'S HIS STATEMENT
Although the pathetic, cowardly careerist Democrats in the House leadership shunned him for it, Congressman Chris Bell, now running for Governor of Texas, first filed ethics charged against DeLay. Tonight Bell made a restrained and dignified statement about DeLay's announced resignation from Congress, pointing out that "The culture of corruption is about more than Tom DeLay."
Tom DeLay’s resignation is a great victory in the fight to clean up corruption in politics, but the war is far from over. The culture of corruption is about a heck of a lot more than Tom DeLay. We need to move toward real progress by turning the conversation from how bad one man is to how good we can all be.
Unfortunately for Texas, Tom DeLay’s protege, Gov. Rick Perry, has institutionalized Washington-style politics in Austin. The problem with the culture both in Washington and Texas is an excessive tolerance for corruption in which what they do that’s illegal isn’t as bad as what they do that’s legal. That’s why I’ve proposed my "Don't Mess With Ethics" reform plan.
A friend of mine joked that if God has a sense of humor, Tom DeLay will leave Congress and return to a Texas where Chris Bell is Governor. After DeLay’s surprising news, it’s looking like my friend might not be too far off the mark.
TUESDAY DAWN UPDATE: BOEHNER ASKS AMERICANS TO DECIDE IF HE IS A LIAR OR INSANE-- OR BOTH
Tom DeLay is likely to face dozens of charges involved in his role as Capo di Tutti Capi of the Republican Crime Syndicate that lorded over the House of Representatives and instituted a Culture of Corruption that has pervaded every aspect of our federal political system. After his first indictments were announced he was forced to resign-- first "temporarily," and then permanently-- from his position as Republican Majority Leader, the position that allowed him to run, in the truest sense of that word, the legislative branch of the Republican Party. Having installed a weak, easily-corrupted, amiable puppet as Speaker, DeLay ran roughshod over every aspect of the House of Representatives and, with Rick Santorum and Bill Frist, created and oversaw the travesty that has undermined the U.S. Constitution and has been dubbed the K Street Project.
After The Hammer, as he was called by his fellow Republicans, started spending more and more of his time and energy desperately trying to stay out of prison and less and less of his time extorting vast sums of money for the Republican congressional caucus and running the day-to-day business of the House, it became apparent that he would have to be replaced as House majority Leader. The most brazen members of the caucus opted for DeLay, Jr, his #2-- Roy Blunt, a thoroughly criminal Missouri extremist who served as DeLay's whip. Blunt, who is also likely to face an intense federal probe for his role in the Abramoff scandals, was passed over by the Republican majority-- barely-- for a slicker, less thuggish, but no less crooked, colleague, John