Wonky Muse
Wonky Muse

September 28, 2005

DeLay Indicted

"Everybody, soon or late, sits down to a banquet of consequences." -- Robert Louis Stevenson

From the A.P.:

WASHINGTON - A Texas grand jury on Wednesday charged Rep. Tom DeLay and two political associates with conspiracy in a campaign finance scheme, forcing the House majority leader to temporarily relinquish his post.

[...]

"I have notified the speaker that I will temporarily step aside from my position as majority leader pursuant to rules of the House Republican Conference and the actions of the Travis County district attorney today," DeLay said.

GOP congressional officials said Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., will recommend that Rep. David Dreier (news, bio, voting record) of California step into those duties. Some of the duties may go to the GOP whip, Rep. Roy Blunt (news, bio, voting record) of Missouri. The Republican rank and file may meet as early as Wednesday night to act on Hastert's recommendation.

The charge carries a potential two-year sentence, which forces DeLay to step down under House Republican rules.

"The defendants entered into an agreement with each other or with TRMPAC (Texans for a Republican Majority Political Action Committee) to make a political contribution in violation of the Texas election code," says the four-page indictment. "The contribution was made directly to the Republican National Committee within 60 days of a general election."
DeLay had to give up his House Majority Leader position based on a rule requiring congressional leaders to step aside if indicted. He and the Republican dominated Congress actually chucked this rule last year but had to reinstate it because of intense pressure and possible voter backlash.

DeLay spokesman Kevin Madden laid down the emerging Republican talking point, charging that this indictment instigated by Texas District Attorney Ronnie Earle -- who is a Democrat -- is "politically motivated". A ridiculous charge, considering that 11 of the last 15 politicians Earle has prosecuted are Democrats.

In fact, DeLay has been mired in ethical violations and questionable political activities for quite some time. He was admonished by the Ethics Committee last year for three separate counts of ethical misconduct. He had a long-term association with lobbyist Jack Abramoff who has been indicted on fraud charges. He tops the list of the 13 most corrupt members of Congress compiled by CREW (Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington). This indictment is just DeLay's banquet of consequences that was long in coming.

I wonder who would sit at this banquet along with DeLay. Frist? Rove? This could just be the beginning.

posted at 11:24 AM by Wonky Muse

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"Sapere Aude."
(Dare to Know)
-- Epistularum Liber Primus, Horace

Wonk (noun): def. A political nerd. Know spelled backwards.

Wonky Muse is the other Filipino American female political blogger. The sane, liberal one.


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