Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Politics: Texas: Tom Delay wins primary, challenges flood of over 30 subpoenas

Last week, wouldn't you know?, indicted former Republican Majority leader of the US House of Representatives, Tom Delay, won the Republican primary in his Congresssional district in Texas. In the Democrat primary in the district, the unopposed old-enemy of Delay, Nick Lampson, entered the fray of a campaign wherein the two will blast away at each other until the November vote.

Against three challengers,

DeLay, 58, held on to his ballot position by avoiding public discussions of his considerable political problems — a felony money-laundering indictment, close ties to lobbyist Jack Abramoff and the loss of his leadership position.

Instead, DeLay campaigned at carefully orchestrated events, avoided direct interviews with reporters and largely focused on his hometown of Sugar Land. It paid off with a 2-to-1 victory margin over lawyer Tom Campbell, who had ties to the first President Bush's administration, and two other candidates.

President's Men - Tom [1]
"That was an effective strategy to get through the primary," said political scientist Cal Jillson of Southern Methodist University in Dallas. "But in the general election, he'll have to face Lampson and Steve Stockman, as well as the press, both local and national."
Tom Delay has been in Congress for 22 years, and thus has conducted 11 campaigns. He is royally hated by Democrats, not just because he kept House Republicans in tite formation and on-the-ball, but also for his clever win in the redistricting battle over Texas' seats in the federal House of Representatives. Where he seems to have been cawt up short was in his supply of funds to his fellow Republican Congressional candidates. So, the Democrat animus toward Delay is understandable; he won, and won, and won in his combat against them.

But observing all that in no way mitigates the issues of the alleged felony for which he was indicted, and his close relationship to Jack Abramoff who has turned "state's evidence" in order to mitigate the penalities against his own often dubious but lucrative lobbying.

I just don't trust Tom Delay. If he's innocent, I hope it becomes clear and that he's exonerated. But otherwise, he preently strikes me as a disgrace to the best values of the Republican Party.

Besides the above - which is based on a report by Wendy Benjaminson, Associated Press via San Fransisco Gate (Mar8,2k6), another of the reports I shifted thru came the following day, an article by Laylan Copeland, "Delay challenges subpoenas," Cox News Service via Oxford [Ohio] Press (Mar9,2k6).

Over the past three months, prosecutors have issued more than thirty subpoenas, mostly trying to tie DeLay closer to disgraced Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff. They came after the trial court temporarily suspended its jurisdiction while it waits for a ruling on a pre-trial appeal.

Houston lawyer Dick DeGuerin on Tuesday asked the Third Court of Appeals in Austin to rescind all subpoenas, but particularly one for DeLay's wife, Christine. Prosecutors are seeking records for a 2000 golfing trip to Scotland in which Abramoff paid for the DeLays' $14,001 airline tickets.

Abramoff has pleaded guilty to several federal charges relating to his attempts to illegally influence members of Congress and defraud his clients.

DeGuerin is arguing that local prosecutors can't have it both ways: They successfully argued in December that Judge Pat Priest could not hold pre-trial hearings that Delay had wanted while they are appealing a dismissed indictment. But, at the same time, they are issuing the subpoenas for a case on hold.
If this sounds legalistically technical enuff, the further details generate a maze of prosecutorial madness, that in itself suggests a strong bias and extra-juridical intention on the part of the Democrat prosecutor and his machine. The end result is that it sure looks like Congressman Delay is being railroaded, whether or not he is guilty. There is no face-value evidence revealed so far, yet it's clear his enemies want to bury him, guilty or no.

Texas politics is a violent sport. - Politicarp

Previously in this series:

President's Men - Karl [1] (Jul31,2k5)

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