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Breaking news: Tom DeLay drops out of House race
April 3, 2006 7:50 PM   Subscribe

CNN confirms that Tom DeLay, the scandal-embroiled Republican Congressman from Texas and former Republican House Majority Leader, has dropped out of the race for the 22nd District House seat.
posted by teferi (144 comments total)

 
Oops. Didn't mean to say "Republican" twice. Here's the TIME story discussing his resignation in more detail.
posted by teferi at 7:52 PM on April 3, 2006


The hammer is being retired to the shed.

So I wonder if the various cases against him have enough evidence to put him away. GOP heavies like him don't do anything without tons of polling -- I wonder if his support was slipping so much that he was both in danger of losing and hurting the party.
posted by mathowie at 7:54 PM on April 3, 2006


So long, sucker.
posted by 40 Watt at 7:55 PM on April 3, 2006


Hammer down!
No DeLay!
Okay, no one needs to use those headlines anymore. They've been done. As has my work here.
posted by yhbc at 7:55 PM on April 3, 2006


Yesssssssss!
posted by bukvich at 7:56 PM on April 3, 2006


My guess is that this is related to the latest round of Abramoff indictments - the one that got his former chief of staff. He knows he's next, and he knows that the feds can make the charges stick.

Plus, he's still got campaign finance regulations violation indictment hanging over his head. He's poison to the Republicans, and unlike so many of them (e.g. Ohio Gov Bob Taft), has the brains to take the heat and step down for the good of the party.
posted by teferi at 7:57 PM on April 3, 2006


Does this mean "The Hammer" got nailed?
posted by drezdn at 7:58 PM on April 3, 2006


So I wonder if the various cases against him have enough evidence to put him away.

They just might. More and more 'ex-aides' are pleading guilty and look like they're flipping. Last Friday it was Delay's former deputy chief of staff, Tony C. Rudy, who plead guilty and will assist in the investigation into Abramoff and others.
posted by ericb at 8:00 PM on April 3, 2006


Sweet that he waited until after the primary to step down. It puts his replacement candidate in a catch-up role.
posted by mr_roboto at 8:00 PM on April 3, 2006


Sweet that he waited until after the primary to step down. It puts his replacement candidate in a catch-up role.
On the other hand, it means that the state party gets to choose his replacement candidate without a potentially vicious and divisive primary that could benefit Nick Lampson, the Democrat running for the seat - it'll be a backroom battle instead.
posted by teferi at 8:05 PM on April 3, 2006


Of course, somewhere, somehow, the terrorists have now won.
posted by clockworkjoe at 8:05 PM on April 3, 2006


Finally, proof that there IS a god! Hallelujah!
posted by bim at 8:08 PM on April 3, 2006


Of course, somewhere, somehow, the terrorists have now won.

And of course, this is all the media's fault.
And of course, this is the fault of gay adoption.
And of course, this is the fault of..what else am i missing?
posted by underdog at 8:13 PM on April 3, 2006


And of course, this is the fault of..what else am i missing?

...illegal immigrants.

...the war on Christianity.

...Northeastern and Californian libruls.
posted by ericb at 8:14 PM on April 3, 2006


I'll bet he's not smiling now.
posted by Operation Afterglow at 8:14 PM on April 3, 2006


How about them ham sandwiches?
posted by fleacircus at 8:15 PM on April 3, 2006


How about them ham sandwiches?

Yeah -- aren't all Delay's problems merely the result of an overzealous prosecutor -- Ronnie Earle?
posted by ericb at 8:16 PM on April 3, 2006


It's been so long since my side has had one in the "W" column, I've forgotten if it's bad form to gloat. Not that I care - I'm going to gloat anyway.

Still, it feels more like a forfeit than a win, what with him quitting like the blowhard bully (read pussy) he is instead of toughing it out to the end. Big hat, no cattle - typical of his ilk.

Next step prison, hopefully. In a small cell. With a large and liberal felon who thinks he's cute.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 8:17 PM on April 3, 2006


It's been so long since my side has had one in the "W" column

Might be more to add to that column --

Fitzgerald Will Seek New White House Indictments:
"In lengthy interviews [with sources who work or worked at the State Department, the CIA and the National Security Council] over the weekend and on Monday, they said that Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald has started to prepare the paperwork to present to the grand jury seeking an indictment against White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove or National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley."
posted by ericb at 8:22 PM on April 3, 2006


How about them ham sandwiches?

Well, since you asked... (S-L)

This was my favorite bit, by the way:

DeLay told Time magazine Monday that he and his wife, Christine, had been prepared for an election battle, but that he decided Wednesday to spare his suburban Houston district the mudfest to come.

Oh, heavens yes. Because if there's one thing Tom DeLay can't handle, it's a mudslinging campaign. Couldn't he just tell us now what he's going to be charged with in three weeks?
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 8:23 PM on April 3, 2006


Also -- things continue to be not so rosy at the White House these days...

CNN: "Press Secretary Scott McClellan and Treasury Secretary John Snow could be the next ones to be shown to the door."
posted by ericb at 8:24 PM on April 3, 2006


Ugh, damn damn damn. It's the twenty-SECOND district, not the twenty-EIGHTH. Teach me to post while excited.

mathowie, any chance you can correct that, just in the interest of accuracy and non-confusion?
posted by teferi at 8:24 PM on April 3, 2006


One down and a whole shitload to go.

ericb, thanks for the post about the next upcoming Fitzmas. We need Fitzmas to come around six or seven times a year.

What are the Vegas odds that the corpulent Turd Blossom goes down this time?
posted by fenriq at 8:29 PM on April 3, 2006


Now he'll disappear just like all the guys who brought us the Constitution breaking Iran-Contra scandal....
posted by sien at 8:32 PM on April 3, 2006


It's not:

"Breaking News: House Drops on Delay, Dick Cheney Frozen in Carbonite, Karl Rove Turned Inside Out in Generous Shower of Sweetbreads for the Poor, Last Six Years of American History an Unfunny Joke, Total Do-Over Called!"

...but I'll take it.
posted by Divine_Wino at 8:36 PM on April 3, 2006


One scummy politician down, lots more to go...
posted by mrbill at 8:40 PM on April 3, 2006


Is this Groundhog Day? Didn't we just do this?
posted by wakko at 8:42 PM on April 3, 2006


Excellent.
posted by Skygazer at 8:48 PM on April 3, 2006


Wakko
Other than the fact that DeLay has the bland, vacant, I bound my nuts tightly with rubberbands because my mother didn't get enough niacin during pregnancy looks of a whore butcherin' torso murderer and Gingrich looks like a Polish ham extruded a body and started to write alternate history pulps, yes it is pretty similar.
posted by Divine_Wino at 8:50 PM on April 3, 2006


Interesting post on the Redstate discussion thread about this:
This is horrible
By: realamerican

Look, I'll be honest. I don't care if DeLay broke a few laws. He was good for our side, and I'd rather have a corrupt Republican than an honest Democrat (not that there is such a thing).

But by dropping out, he might as well put on a T-shirt saying, "Yes, I AM guilty!" This will paint the entire Republican Party in a bad light, and put our majority in real jeopardy. The honorable thing for him to do would have been to resign before the primary. By waiting until now, he makes it look as though Earle or someone has something really damaging on him. Even if he's innocent, he looks incredibly guilty.

This is bad. Just really, really bad. Truthfully, I think we just lost the House.
There's just a whole lot about that post worth consideration.
posted by darkstar at 8:52 PM on April 3, 2006


This is where I put my blatant self link in lieu of posting the entire photocomicstripthing I did when the man got arrested back in the day.
posted by beaucoupkevin at 8:52 PM on April 3, 2006


So now are they going to reverse the redistricting that he ochestrated in Texas? The one thing that pisses me off when a House member has to leave Congress in shame due to corruption is how they let all the acts they committed stand. There should be a law that says - you get indicted - everything you touched with that corruption goes right back on the table.
posted by any major dude at 8:54 PM on April 3, 2006


Nice to hear when some shit has fallen off the bottom of a shoe. . .
posted by mk1gti at 8:54 PM on April 3, 2006


I'm sorry, that should read convicted - we all know indictments are just political ploys right???
posted by any major dude at 8:55 PM on April 3, 2006




(via PERRspectives, via dKos)
posted by darkstar at 9:01 PM on April 3, 2006


*little dance*
posted by fungible at 9:10 PM on April 3, 2006


"Help maintain a healthy, respectful discussion by focusing comments on the issues, topics, and facts at hand -- not at other members of the site."

Is Tom DeLay a member of MeFi? ...No?

[connery] SUCK IT, TOM. [/connery]
posted by spiderwire at 9:11 PM on April 3, 2006


Burnt Orange Report has a good thread on this, including some insights on how the Special Election might go and the possible front-runnner to be DeLay's replacement (tip o' the hat to dKos).

A memorable snippet from the Burnt Orange thread:
And the best quote from the Lone Star Project (sadly) is...

Matt Angle, former chief of US Rep. Martin Frost, runs the Lone Star Project out of Washington, DC. Angle says DeLay’s mission is now complete.

"Tom DeLay has managed to remove every single leader in the Texas delegation, including himself," Angle said. "He’s removed three ranking members, a key whip and now the majority leader of the House."
Exterminator, indeed.
posted by darkstar at 9:11 PM on April 3, 2006


fenriq : What are the Vegas odds that the corpulent Turd Blossom goes down this time?

no odds, per se, but you can bet on Rove going down here.

I stand to win some cash on a bet I placed on DeLay (read: against him) as soon as his withdrawal becomes official.
posted by pruner at 9:15 PM on April 3, 2006


So long Mr. Delay, and may you be elected to one more house by a jury of your peers.
posted by agent at 9:21 PM on April 3, 2006


Two words:

"President DeLay"
posted by republican at 9:28 PM on April 3, 2006


Bah, Rove will flip before he is indicted. Sadly, were in a catch 22 - if Fitz goes after Rove, they pull the vendetta/victim argument out to try and get sympathy (though this might not work), if Rove cops a deal and stays out of prison, then we lose as soon as he is working for someone's campaign again (which wont take that long).
posted by SirOmega at 9:28 PM on April 3, 2006


Scott McClellan would be smart to leave before David Gregory finally loses it and kills him right there in the press room.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:32 PM on April 3, 2006


I suppose I could take this to MeTa, but seriously, couldn't the least bit of effort been put into this FPP? E.g. a link about the K Street Project to explain why DeLay's leaving is so important.
Oh boy! Front-page news on CNN! Nobody on MeFi will have seen this.
posted by Aknaton at 9:32 PM on April 3, 2006


oh noesfilter
posted by wakko at 9:35 PM on April 3, 2006


"...Karl Rove Turned Inside Out in Generous Shower of Sweetbreads for the Poor..."

*chortle-snarf*

Generous indeed.

Good riddance to DeLay.
posted by loquacious at 9:39 PM on April 3, 2006


pruner, sweet thanks!, nothing gives my schadenfreude a kick in the pants like actually profiting off of the assholes going down!
posted by fenriq at 9:45 PM on April 3, 2006


A senator named "delay". Right out of Sinclair Lewis. I'll miss him just for that.
posted by telstar at 9:58 PM on April 3, 2006


Looking at the Banana Republicans scorecard: why are politicians always so bloated and pasty? Someone needs to tell them to lay off the salt and get more sun, pronto, cause I dont pay taxes to look at non-beautiful people.
posted by supercrayon at 10:03 PM on April 3, 2006


oh noesfilter

ROFL
posted by wfrgms at 10:06 PM on April 3, 2006


you're welcome fenriq. I did really well last Fitzmas.

FYI, they've got a new DeLay pool going on whether he's indicted outside of Texas before May 1.

there's also one on whether McClellan and/or Snow are gone by May 1.
posted by pruner at 10:07 PM on April 3, 2006


BBC words it well: ... Mr DeLay has been destroyed by corruption allegations against him and admitted corruption by his senior staff.

Just days ago his former deputy chief of staff pleaded guilty to corruption, saying he ran a criminal enterprise out of Mr DeLay's office.
...
The White House is not directly involved, though late last year President Bush said he believed Mr DeLay was innocent of any wrongdoing.

Mr Bush may now regret his decision to be so supportive.

posted by amberglow at 10:08 PM on April 3, 2006


Couldn't have happened to a better Prince of Evil.

It's just now occurring to conservatives that they're likely going to lose the House? They need to read more newspapers.

The White House shakeup isn't really a win for our side. Yes, it does have some propaganda value in that it implicitly acknowledges that they've been incompetent. But there is the slight chance that this shake-up will be effective. I'd prefer that they continue being astoundingly incompetent, particularly with regard to having this fabulous political tin-ear.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:14 PM on April 3, 2006


Delay is just doing this so he can be a lobbyist...
posted by WhipSmart at 10:19 PM on April 3, 2006


Oh, heavens yes. Because if there's one thing Tom DeLay can't handle, it's a mudslinging campaign.

*giggle*

Thanks for the chuckle
posted by rough ashlar at 10:21 PM on April 3, 2006


"President DeLay"

Ok, I am actually in pain from the laughing fit that just triggered.
posted by 2sheets at 10:25 PM on April 3, 2006


Delay is just doing this so he can be a lobbyist...

Exactly. And they all owe him bigtime--he'll be able name any price and get it. The question will be the legal stuff--he might be too hot to handle until that's "fixed" -- a Bush pardon?
posted by amberglow at 10:39 PM on April 3, 2006


oh--check this out: Bush won't allow Tom DeLay's announcement
posted by amberglow at 10:43 PM on April 3, 2006


yay!
posted by bshort at 10:50 PM on April 3, 2006


amberglow, so Bush is saying that without Tom Delay, the terrorists will have won?

Jeebus, these folks are completely freaking nuts. But hey, I hope there are more photo ops with Bush and Delay. Birds of a feather.....get shot by Dick Cheney.

And I hereby decree that "9/11" is the new "Halleluyahgobble".
posted by fenriq at 10:51 PM on April 3, 2006


There is also some question as to the use of his campaign funds. WashPo supposedly reports (no link, sorry; text via dKos):
As of Feb. 15, when his campaign filed its most recent report with the Federal Election Commission, DeLay had $1,295,350 on hand. ...

By stepping aside so early in an election year, a lawmaker "wouldn't be spending to be reelected" and could transfer the funds immediately to fend off any federal charges, said lawyer Kenneth A. Gross, a former head of the FEC's enforcement division. The last lawmaker to gain the FEC's formal approval for such a transfer was Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-Calif.), who resigned last November after pleading guilty to evading taxes and accepting bribes.
So it looks like DeLay just bagged himself a $1.3 million defense fund.
posted by darkstar at 10:55 PM on April 3, 2006


it's a joke--a scary one. since Bush is playing dictator and has all these super magical powers above and beyond the Constitution and all the laws of the land, it wouldn't be surprising if he probably is being advised he can do this too.
posted by amberglow at 11:03 PM on April 3, 2006


oh, when are all his and Abramoff's court dates? is this timed to that?
posted by amberglow at 11:05 PM on April 3, 2006


And this from Politics1:
DeLay says he feels "liberated" by his decision, and will spend the year campaigning for Republican candidates and working to build a closer connection between religion and government. Frankly, I'd be surprised to see many GOP candidates placing requests for DeLay to come stump for them. Then again, House Majority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) was surprisingly effusive in praise of his departing colleague. "Tom is one of the most effective and gifted leaders the Republican Party has ever known ... The country owes Tom a great debt of gratitude for helping lead America in a new direction ... He has served our nation with integrity and honor, and I'm honored to call him my colleague and friend," said Bohener.
posted by darkstar at 11:06 PM on April 3, 2006


where are the apologists to spin this into a good move for the GOP?
posted by puke & cry at 11:09 PM on April 3, 2006 [1 favorite]


Here's one: Bush calls DeLay innocent, stands by Cheney and Rove (December)
posted by amberglow at 11:12 PM on April 3, 2006


puke, most folks see this as positive in one sense for the GOP: it clears out the TX-22 ballot on the GOP side to field someone the Repub voters can rally behind. Given the Repub leanings of TX-22, it means that the seat may well remain in GOP hands this November, unless Lampson runs a superlative campaign.

The timing of DeLay's leaving Congress is also positive for the GOP (I mean, they're making the best of a bad thing). Lampson would likely have won a General election, which only requires a plurality to win. And with the other Indies running, it would have made that even more likely. However, if DeLay's departure from Congress triggers a Special election, those have to be won by 51%, which will be very tough for Lampson to do.

DeLay is a corrupt bastard, but he's a very clever one, too.
posted by darkstar at 11:35 PM on April 3, 2006


As I said over on DeVoter, that guy's s dirty, you could hose him off for landfill. I'm shocked it took this long.
posted by Malor at 11:41 PM on April 3, 2006


... "so dirty"... sorry.
posted by Malor at 11:42 PM on April 3, 2006


Hysterical: ... there is always comedy from the Free Republic:

Seriously. He’s been much more open about speaking of his relationship with God, and he might have decided he’s going to spend the rest of his life working for foster care, and for his Christian values.

It is extraordinarily hard for a mark to accept he’s just been sold a case of snake oil.

posted by amberglow at 11:51 PM on April 3, 2006


I think he quit the re-eleection bid to start toughening up his sphincter.
posted by fenriq at 12:07 AM on April 4, 2006


I keep forgetting that homosexual rape is the funny one that's OK to rub your hands together in anticipation of.
posted by Jenga at 12:19 AM on April 4, 2006


Has Bush denied ever meeting this guy yet?
posted by dash_slot- at 12:35 AM on April 4, 2006


Aknaton: you're right. I let my excitement over seeing one of the Bad Guys go down get the better of me and produced a one-link post with two errors in it, one fixed by the grace of #1.

That being said, I think we've gotten some interesting discussion out of it, so perhaps I'm partly redeemed.
posted by teferi at 1:28 AM on April 4, 2006


Thank you, Jenga, for pointing out that even for scum like Delay, it's still not okay to joke of forced prison rape- one of the worst experiences a human being could ever be subjected to.

Tom Delay is a monster himself, a heartless evil man who deserves the worst punishment our judicial system can mete out... but even then it should not be cruel, unusual, or so dehumanizing as to be relentless used up like a kleenex for an even sicker person's pleasure. Desiring that- even as a "joke" posted anonymously, because truly there are no jokes in the human mind- reveals a psyche as twisted and sick as any leash-bearer at Abu Ghraib.
posted by hincandenza at 3:09 AM on April 4, 2006


What great news to wake up to!
posted by moonbird at 3:16 AM on April 4, 2006


Tom Delay is a monster himself, a heartless evil man who deserves the worst punishment our judicial system can mete out...

Well, I'd back off from that hyperbole, as much as I dislike the man's politics. I'd rather argue he's simply deserving of the justice appropriate to whatever actual crimes might be proven.

("Heartless" he may be, but I tend not to throw out the word "evil" or "monster" for alleged white collar criminals.)
posted by darkstar at 3:56 AM on April 4, 2006


("Heartless" he may be, but I tend not to throw out the word "evil" or "monster" for alleged white collar criminals.)
posted by darkstar at 3:56 AM PST on April 4 [!]


Is that because you think white collar crimes are "victimless" crimes? Perhaps you need to think a little more deeply on this.
posted by sic at 4:16 AM on April 4, 2006


.

--NOT!
posted by TedW at 4:30 AM on April 4, 2006


Throwing around words like "evil" is a republican habit...

... I prefer douchebag...
posted by Ridx at 5:08 AM on April 4, 2006


This is horrible
By: realamerican

Look, I'll be honest. I don't care if DeLay broke a few laws. He was good for our side, and I'd rather have a corrupt Republican than an honest Democrat ....


Of course no "Real American" would actually want a corrupt politician in government. Corrupt politicians are traitors to their country and it is decidedly un-American to want a traitor in the government.
posted by caddis at 5:11 AM on April 4, 2006


Bah, Rove will flip before he is indicted.

Why would Fitzgerald flip him?

Rove is the ultimate target. Fitz can't take down Bush, and everyone knows that Rove runs the show. Rove may well come calling if it gets close to try and cop a deal, only to find that nobody is dealing.
posted by eriko at 5:27 AM on April 4, 2006


One other thing I just twigged to:

By changing his residency to his townhouse in Virginia (which was a little puzzling to me at first), it makes DeLay technically ineligible to run for re-election. Which means that the GOP can appoint a replacement in the race without a special election.

Pretty crafty, eh?

And sic, yes, white collar crimes have victims. Duh. (That's not all that "deep" an observation, by the way.) Or did you just intend to suggest that you can't imagine any crimes truly more heinous and deserving of the epithet "evil" than money laundering and election ethics violations? Eh, whatev.

In any event, I tend to agree with Ridx's terminology. And if DeLay is convicted, then it will be a "criminal douchebag".
posted by darkstar at 5:35 AM on April 4, 2006


What caddis said.
Delay and those who support his ilk are traitors to their country.
Putting partisan political party interests above that of country cannot be anything else.
posted by nofundy at 5:52 AM on April 4, 2006


When anybody asks me to do something today, I'm gonna say: "I'll attend to this in the congressional manner," and when they ask what I mean, I'm gonna reply "Without DeLay." And then maybe I'll have a sandwich or something.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 6:00 AM on April 4, 2006


Two words:

"President DeLay"


Four words:

Put down the crack pipe.
posted by jonp72 at 6:07 AM on April 4, 2006


By changing his residency to his townhouse in Virginia (which was a little puzzling to me at first), it makes DeLay technically ineligible to run for re-election. Which means that the GOP can appoint a replacement in the race without a special election.

Maybe he's just covering bases, or maybe he wants to stop being a resident of Texas when the statute of limitations ends on his crimes there. Ronnie Earle has no jurisdiction in Virginia.

As for the ballot, whatever. It would be a sillier and more negative appearance if the Democrats actually fought to somehow keep DeLay (or no Repulbican) on the ballot than just letting them pencil someone in. They made exceptions in New Jersey (twice in the same election) and Minnesota, too. I'm far more interested in focusing on voter disenfranchisement than candidate disenfranchisement.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:16 AM on April 4, 2006


So why will our tax dollars pay for this guy's retirement (very funny, BTW, PinkStainless tail)?
posted by Pressed Rat at 6:20 AM on April 4, 2006


Ding Dong, the bugman's gone! : )
posted by SisterHavana at 6:22 AM on April 4, 2006


Four words:

Hehehehe...and what are YOU smoking? :)
posted by darkstar at 6:56 AM on April 4, 2006


maybe he wants to stop being a resident of Texas when the statute of limitations ends on his crimes there.

No good. Statue of Limitations is until indictment. Now that this has happened, that's off the table.
posted by eriko at 6:58 AM on April 4, 2006


I live in DeLay's district, I moved there to vote against him (not to mention the wonderful waterfront view from my house) and this will be the first time in years that I'll actually have a choice for my rep. The only problem is that with DeLay running Lampson was a sure thing. Now that DeLay is out the GOP may actually have a chance.

DeLay's a right bastard though. Recently he was spouting off about how the 'politics of personal destruction' was not going to take him out of the race. Considering that he wrote the book on the politics of personal destruction I found his comment to be ironic.

Ah well, I'm happy he's gone.
posted by DragonBoy at 7:07 AM on April 4, 2006


Good riddens!
posted by ParisParamus at 7:17 AM on April 4, 2006


Apparently his wife may be in trouble too--she was on the payroll for Alexander Strategy Group, the Abramoff firm.--...Richard Cullen, an attorney for the DeLays, said Christine DeLay was hired by Buckham, an old family friend, to determine the favorite charity of every member of Congress. She was paid $3,200 to $3,400 a month for three years, or about $115,000 total, he said. ...
posted by amberglow at 7:49 AM on April 4, 2006


Don't let the door hit you on the way out, asshole.
posted by malaprohibita at 7:51 AM on April 4, 2006


...and LGF is strangely silent. hmmmm
posted by malaprohibita at 8:07 AM on April 4, 2006


Is there a word for wanting to look like you've fallen on a sword for someone, but actually you've been tossed onto it kicking and screaming?

Hopefully my party won't f up 2006, because the House is for the taking, and possibly even the Senate (but I'd be happy with just the former).

Memo to Texas--thanks for almost ruining it, but we'll be taking our country back now kthxbye.
posted by bardic at 8:08 AM on April 4, 2006




If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Congress is the less.
Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for Bob Ney.
posted by Otis at 8:56 AM on April 4, 2006


“ ‘I don't care if DeLay broke a few laws. He was good for our side, and I'd rather have a corrupt Republican than an honest Democrat’ ” - (re)posted by darkstar from the Redstate discussion thread.

Reason #1 why I’m non-partisan (”our side” etc). But a big, big reason why I’m not a Republican.
Someone who “breaks a few laws” is not good for anyone’s side. I’d rather stand alone than stand with someone who thinks that way, no matter how good the support is. ‘Gee, it’s poison, but it sure tastes good!’
If DeLay is guilty (and it sure looks it) he belongs in prison.
posted by Smedleyman at 9:25 AM on April 4, 2006


Reason #1 why I’m non-partisan (”our side” etc). But a big, big reason why I’m not a Republican.
Someone who “breaks a few laws” is not good for anyone’s side.


To be fair, if it was a librul saying that about a popular congressman who was caught with a hooker or smoking pot (or smoking pot with a hooker), very few on mefi would be up in arms.

(at least I hope not).

Then again, I think fraud and conspiracy are much worse crimes that hurt others where as breaking a few laws that protect you from yourself are no big deal, but I guess I have different priorities than the redstate folks.
posted by [insert clever name here] at 10:00 AM on April 4, 2006


Oh...my nipples are like a little girl's, I am so pleased.
posted by dejah420 at 10:01 AM on April 4, 2006


Then again, I think fraud and conspiracy are much worse crimes that hurt others where as breaking a few laws that protect you from yourself are no big deal, but I guess I have different priorities than the redstate folks.

Duh. But I'd still be angry; I don't care if my politicians smoke pot or sleep with hookers so long as they're honest about it. Dishonest pols are problematic.
posted by spiderwire at 10:07 AM on April 4, 2006


Four words:

Hehehehe...and what are YOU smoking? :)


[Pee-Wee Herman voice]I meant to do that.[/Pee-Wee Herman voice]
posted by jonp72 at 10:07 AM on April 4, 2006


Republicans: At least we don't smoke pot or have sex.
posted by Artw at 10:09 AM on April 4, 2006


Delay has also quit the congress, and is even moving out of texas.
posted by delmoi at 10:35 AM on April 4, 2006


You know the pardon is coming from Our Leader, though, right? He probably won't go to prison, even though this should end his political career in most respects.
posted by zoogleplex at 10:37 AM on April 4, 2006


He probably won't go to prison, even though this should end his political career in most respects.

In the meantime, the Houston Chronicle reports that DeLay will "move to Virginia to work with a conservative organization." Which organization is at this time unkown. My bet is he gets a 'high-paying' lobbying job.
posted by ericb at 10:54 AM on April 4, 2006


Washington Post: "Federal Probe Has Edged Closer to DeLay."
posted by ericb at 10:58 AM on April 4, 2006


The Family Squeeze…A Theory
"I can’t help but think that the 'Wives Club' has come back up again in the Federal probe. When the Feds have a target in their sites, and that target has close family or friends who are also involved in the criminal enterprise, it is a common practice to try and snare the outliers as leverage to flip the target.

....I’ve been wracking my brain trying to come up with motivation for DeLay to just walk away from his beloved power and money machine — and the only puzzle piece that seems to fit is some sort of concern for his family. If DeLay’s wife and daughter were in the crosshairs, who wouldn’t he be willing to sell out to save them? Himself? Other members of Congress and the KStreet gang?"
posted by ericb at 11:10 AM on April 4, 2006


...or maybe he's a selfish bastard and wants to stay out of prison...

note above how he can now use his election funds for his defense, that he's moving out of Ronnie Earle's jurisdiction, that he can now move into a cushy job as a lobbyist (pacé speculation and the gist of his own comments), and most importantly that it relieves a lot of the political pressure on him by making it less of a story.

what does sticking around net him? he's not the house leader anymore, his cohorts are dropping like flies, and his whole political career has been based on corrupt practices that he can't engage in anymore without serious fear of repercussions. there's little downside.
posted by spiderwire at 11:22 AM on April 4, 2006


that was in response to ericb's "Family Squeeze" article, not just a random comment.
posted by spiderwire at 11:23 AM on April 4, 2006


spiderwire: note above how he can now use his election funds for his defense, that he's moving out of Ronnie Earle's jurisdiction, that he can now move into a cushy job as a lobbyist (pacé speculation and the gist of his own comments), and most importantly that it relieves a lot of the political pressure on him by making it less of a story.

And he can pull an Elliot Abrams/Ollie North and publish books about how he was persecuted for political patriotism.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 11:25 AM on April 4, 2006


...the title will probably feature some kind of metaphor about Christians being thrown to lions.
posted by Artw at 11:27 AM on April 4, 2006


Yeah, Dems are guilty of the same schtick. I hesitate to say ‘liberal’ because I don’t think “liberal” and “Democrat” are any more synonymous than “conservative” and “Republican.” Particularly lately.

For me it’s not really political. I couldn’t respect any politician breaking any law and trying to get away with it, unless it was within his ethical sphere.
F’rinstance, if Joe Popular congressman was smoking the dope, but was all in favor of doobage legalization, I’d have less of a problem with it. Particularly if done as civil disobedience.
I agree there are degrees there of course. Sleeping with hookers /= embezzling millions in public funds. Tough to justify either as civil disobediance, really.
I’d love to see the hooker platform though.

But they’re supposed to uphold the law as public officials. If anything we should be harder on them - any of them - that break the law.
Sorta like a cop on the take vs. a petty thief. I can almost respect a professional thief who takes pains not to hurt anyone (almost). The cop does far more damage to society.
DeLay has far more responsibility to the people who respect him to be an honest, upright individual than he does to the people that dislike him.

Hell, you have kids you learn that fast. It’s monkey see monkey do. Politicising this seems like the equivalent of saying “It’s ok for US to do this...” to your kids.
At some point you have to go to the other end of that “...but not for THEM.”

And how do WE define them? Dems? Liberals? Jews? Blacks? Immigrants? Arabs?
Is it everyone that doesn’t believe as WE do?
If so - then what is it WE believe? Clearly it isn’t in the law.

I can’t celebrate this either way. I see no part of this I can call “good” except it’s ending. And I don’t know that his resignation is it.

Seems like he will be rewarded for his loyalty. And to what? Block ‘X’ of political power that exists right now?

Which is why I’m a conservative (by the old usage of that term) because I don’t think long standing principles and traditions of society should be suborned to the needs of right now.

Which is exactly what is happening with this administration. Be loyal to us (instead of the law, or ethics or traditional means) and you will be rewarded.
So what happens when they’re out of power?
posted by Smedleyman at 11:28 AM on April 4, 2006


In truth, he's been emasculated for months now. Nevertheless, the sooner we see the backside of that wall-eyed, gerrymandering, roach killer, the better. Can't wait to see what new surprises the backwards state of Texas sends our way.
posted by crunchland at 11:29 AM on April 4, 2006


Tom DeLay is a Chicken


Chicken!
posted by Skygazer at 11:45 AM on April 4, 2006


KJS: corruption, the gift that keeps on giving! (and occasionally taking)

Smedly: what "schtick" are you talking about? by any rational measure, the democrats in congress right now are far less corrupt than their republican counterparts. granted, they're not perfect, but is that the criteria? (back to "gore is the same as bush"?)
posted by spiderwire at 12:17 PM on April 4, 2006


So are we now defining DeLay as "not a conservative"?
posted by Artw at 12:28 PM on April 4, 2006


“what "schtick" are you talking about?”

The general “hooray for our side - your side sucks” thing. Looking the other way on your team’s corruption while pointing out the other teams lawlessness.
I mean nothin’ specific. More of a longer timeline, big picture look.
I agree the Dems in congress now are less corrupt than the Repubs. I don’t know that that is a function of their forthrightness though, rather than them just not being in power.
To continue with the yiddish derivatives, I think both parties are full of schlemiels, with only an occasional mensch (Lincoln, f’rinstance), and they give me the shpilkes from all these tsuris.
That doesn’t at all excuse DeLay who’s A shande.
And public officials should all look more to the principles they’re supposed to uphold than seeking whatever advantage they can for the sake of this meshugaas political opportunism.

“So are we now defining DeLay as "not a conservative"? “ - posted by Artw

Who’s “we”?
I don’t want to get into the ‘real scotsman’ thing. But I understand the term “liberal” has been co-opted as well.
posted by Smedleyman at 1:19 PM on April 4, 2006


"Yeah, we’ll miss the old bastard — he knew how to be a majority leader, dammit. It’s about taking the R.J. Reynolds corporate jet to your arraignment and not giving a shit, not being famous for your goddamn tan like some dimestore George Hamilton. It’s about multiple admonishments from the House ethics committee, comparing yourself to Jesus, flashing a shit-eating grin in your mugshot, money-laundering, calling for violent retribution against activist judges, and contacting six federal agencies to trail Texas Democrats! Boehner — you have some mighty big shoes to fill. And Tom — we’ll miss you. We hope you keep up the shamelessness, wherever you end up."

-- Wonkette
posted by ericb at 1:24 PM on April 4, 2006


Smedley, I respectfully disagree. Tom Delay was a particularly egregious example of his breed of dickhead, and his exit from politics couldn't have happened soon enough. More importantly, it hasn't been happening often enough recently, IMO.

So yes, I do think that's reason for celebration. Your argument is tantamount to saying that we can't celebrate victories unless we've won the war.
posted by spiderwire at 1:34 PM on April 4, 2006


Also, w/r/t Looking the other way on your team’s corruption:

Again, the current distinction between Republicans and Democrats on this issue is not trivial. While there have been and are corrupt Democrats, there is simply no rational argument here.

Second, there isn't anything partisan about celebrating a small victory over corruption, as I'm sure you'd agree. Neither party has a monopoly on honesty and fairness.

Third, you are putting words in people's mouths; you have no a priori way to determine whether people are celebrating for their "side" or not -- your assumption is a partisan one, namely that anyone celebrating Tom Delay's downfall is doing so for party reasons.

Delay's departure is a victory both for Democrats and for democracy; those things are not mutually exclusive despite what you may have been led to believe. On the contrary, one could make the argument that there's a very good reasons that Delay and his ilk aren't as heavily represented in the Democratic party. But I wouldn't want to start casting stones.
posted by spiderwire at 1:39 PM on April 4, 2006


Bush & DeLay
"A long, twisted, political relationship is over. Asked about the DeLay news today, the president didn't exactly gush over the loss of the 'Hammer' on Capitol Hill. In fact, Bush seemed to talk beyond the troubled legacy DeLay leaves behind, insisting 'our party will continue to succeed because we're the party of ideas.'

The White House has always struggled to express the president's support for DeLay because, well, Bush doesn't really SUPPORT him, he's always endured him. DeLay has been a presidential ally even though Bush never much cared for him personally nor did he feel his style helped the party.

The president's carefully chosen words today reflect two realities: one, DeLay's move has now solidified the Abramoff affair's impact on the Republican party's already troubled 2006; two, Bush knows full well his problem-prone second term is equally to blame for the party's woes.

The upside is that the White House may find a new opening here. They are desperately looking to start the comeback and a DeLay exit combined with some additional changes in the White House may help them make the argument that there's a new look to the party running Washington."

-- David Gregory, NBC News
posted by ericb at 2:00 PM on April 4, 2006


Meet the new boss...
posted by spiderwire at 2:08 PM on April 4, 2006


“Your argument is tantamount to saying that we can't celebrate victories unless we've won the war.”

Then I’m not making myself clear.
From darkstar’s repost - some goof said: “I don't care if DeLay broke a few laws. He was good for our side, and I'd rather have a corrupt Republican than an honest Democrat”
Which I think both sides can be guilty of.

I would rather have an honest official of either side in office - no matter how vehimently opposed they were to my views (e.g - someone utterly committed to taking away the right to bear arms) than anyone corrupt.
Because at the very least, even in opposition that person A. believes in something other than their own advantage and B. agrees to play by the same rules.

I don’t celebrate this because I don’t think it’s over.
Indeed, I know of many people who don’t celebrate victories in battle because they are opposed to war on principle.

My position on this is similar in form.

I’ll celebrate when DeLay is in fpmita prison for 20 years.
I’ll be estatic when the environment of loyalty to party sect over principle (or indeed even the greater parties) that creates DeLays is not the standard as it now seems to be.
I’m not arguing that we can’t be happy until all corruption is gone (and we live on rock candy mountain and eat pancakes all day).

If this was something I thought would really stick in his ass like a broomhandle from a senator’s kid, I’d be a lot happier.

I don’t think he was smiling during his mugshot because he takes it at all seriously.

I’d be happy if something occured that did make him very grave.

“Again, the current distinction between Republicans and Democrats on this issue is not trivial.”

Conceded that.

“Third, you are putting words in people's mouths; you have no a priori way to determine whether people are celebrating for their "side" or not -- your assumption is a partisan one, namely that anyone celebrating Tom Delay's downfall is doing so for party reasons.”

I’m speaking very very generally. Not pointing to anyone here. Except for the guy in darkstar’s comment and those of his ilk which are to be found everywhere.

“Delay's departure is a victory both for Democrats and for democracy”

Democrats yes. I think democracy is more complex an issue. Is it a moral/symbolic victory for democracy? Perhaps. But perhaps it’s only surface.

But then I can be a bit of a cynic.
Good to me would be his paying for it with jail time.
posted by Smedleyman at 2:09 PM on April 4, 2006


Fair enough, sorry I missed the context.

That said, I think that it's worth celebrating even if it is symbolic -- we are, essentially, celebrating the value of an honest democracy (obviously that doesn't include people who are celebrating for partisan reasons).

Given the state of the political landscape, I'm quite content to celebrate today and "get back to business" tomorrow.

If Delay were to get sent to prison, you probably wouldn't see me for a couple days.
posted by spiderwire at 2:13 PM on April 4, 2006


I don’t think he was smiling during his mugshot because he takes it at all seriously.

"TIME Magazine: Your smiling mug shot — what made you think of that and what do you think the consequence of that has been?

DELAY: Oh, I don't know. I said a little prayer. First of all, you only get one take. It's a very humiliating thing, to be booked. And I said a little prayer before I actually did the fingerprint thing, and the picture. And my prayer was basically: 'Let people see Christ through me. And let me smile.' Now, when they took the shot, from my side, I thought it was fakiest smile I'd ever given. But through the camera, it was glowing. I mean, it had the right impact. Poor old left couldn't use it at all. They had all kind of things planned, they'd spent a lot of money. It made me feel kind of good that all those plans went down the toilet."
posted by ericb at 2:45 PM on April 4, 2006


"DeLay said he was 'glowing,' not because his faith saw him through this trying ordeal, but because the "poor old left couldn't use" his mug shot. DeLay apparently worships at the First Church of Spite. I hear it's a harmwarming place." [source]
posted by ericb at 2:47 PM on April 4, 2006


“It made me feel kind of good that all those plans went down the toilet.”

Reminds me of Cardinal Richelieu.
...no, wait, he was a patron of the arts.
posted by Smedleyman at 3:31 PM on April 4, 2006


I’d love to see the hooker platform though.

So let it be written...


posted by darkstar at 4:57 PM on April 4, 2006






They had all kind of things planned, they'd spent a lot of money. It made me feel kind of good that all those plans went down the toilet.

It so was totally worth going to jail!
posted by JHarris at 6:39 PM on April 4, 2006


Boy, you sure got a purdy mouth...and 'hammer.'
posted by ericb at 7:12 PM on April 4, 2006




shnoz-gobblin -- seems you had an HTML hiccup. No problem -- we all have 'em.

Correct link here.
posted by ericb at 7:32 PM on April 4, 2006


CNN: "Press Secretary Scott McClellan and Treasury Secretary John Snow could be the next ones to be shown to the door."

Off-topic, but somewhat related --

Vanity Fair: Scott McClellan -- "Is he a victim, a pawn, or a P.R. disaster?"
posted by ericb at 7:34 PM on April 4, 2006


That McClellan article is brutal, man. What a fun read.

My political affiliation is "Train Wreck Observer" now, btw.
posted by spiderwire at 8:41 PM on April 4, 2006


Anyone seen this?

...just sayin'
posted by Smedleyman at 5:15 PM on April 5, 2006


Dumbass....ugh. This.
posted by Smedleyman at 5:15 PM on April 5, 2006


Ok, teh internets isn't working for me.

Scroll down on the above link(s) to the video on Delay's Ovation.
posted by Smedleyman at 5:17 PM on April 5, 2006


The people who are giving him the ovation in that video are his staffers ... you know, the guys he pays. I guess I'd clap for my boss if he told me to, too.
posted by crunchland at 5:28 PM on April 5, 2006




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