Tuesday, April 04, 2006

"Local Republicans Are Eating Each Other Alive"

by Len Hart, The Existentialist Cowboy

That's how the situation is described in Tom DeLay's hometown of Sugar Land, TX. where a web site called "Juanita's" has been snapping at DeLay's heels and exposing his hijinks from the get go. So —don't fall for GOP nonsense about how those nasty old liberals like George Soros, Michael Moore and Barbra Streisand are ganging up on poor Tom. Tom DeLay's worst enemies are not only in the GOP, they live in Texas where they know him better than anyone else anywhere. The atmosphere in at least some parts of Sugar Land is downright "giddy" if not a substitute for Mardi Gras:
My prediction is that Tom will continue in his present life-calling and become a teevee evangelist. It's just like being a Congressman: the hours are good, you can have girlfriends on the side as long as you don't get caught, you can get stoopid people to give you lotsa money, it helps if your wife cries a lot and can make "Jesus" a three-syllable word, and you get to wear fancy clothes. He'll hardly know the difference.
Juanita's, Sugar Land, TX Web Site
The GOP has beheld the vacuum and it sucks! Most Texas GOPPERS fed at the trough; most benefited from crookery; most got on board the gravy train. DeLay's fall is a product of a polarized House of Representatives, a growing culture of corruption throughout Washington, and Bush's own falling star.
While Democrats might have looked forward to having DeLay to paint with "culture of corruption" charges, the GOP loses the most "effective" partisan in the GOP arsenal. It was back in the early 80's as a State Representative that DeLay began building a GOP majority that he hoped would last for decades, if not a thousand years.

A 20 year Reich? 

Here's the PC version on Tom DeLay's own web site:
During a Fort Bend County Republican Committee meeting in 1978, a party official suggested that DeLay run for an open Texas State House seat that had never before elected a Republican. Excited by the prospect of lowering taxes and excess regulations, DeLay rolled up his sleeves and impressed enough voters to win the election. After serving in Austin for six years, he succeeded in becoming the first Republican Fort Bend County ever elected to the United States Congress.
DeLay mastered the art of diluting the Democratic voting strength in Houston's area minority districts. Pioneering computer-aided gerrymandering, DeLay's GOP created strange looking districts —narrow, weirdly-shaped, artificial.

Before his announcement, it was reported that DeLay had raised $1.3 million for his campaign. DeLay would have faced a former victim of DeLay-mandering: former Rep. Nick Lampson, a Democrat, who lost his seat in 2004.

DeLay's troubles may have just begun. He still faces indictment in Texas on money laundering charges and other allegations of campaign law violations. Former DeLay aides, Tony Rudy and Michael Scanlon, have already pleaded guilty to federal corruption charges. Ex-lobbyist Jack Abramoff, meanwhile, is cooperating with federal investigators even as a corruption investigation continues to widen on Capitol Hill. And it is in this thicket that we find DeLay's real reasons for withdrawing:
"The guy has a hide of titanium. This is not about his election, this is about his defense of the criminal investigation," former federal prosecutor John P. Flannery II said. "The circle is closing on him for a federal indictment."
Brand, whose previous clients have included members of Congress, said it wasn't uncommon for lawmakers to shelve their political careers when faced with the possibility of criminal charges.
"He's going to face hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal expenses if he gets charged and decides to defend himself," Brand said. "It's hard to focus on that and focus on re-election."
Signs point to federal investigators zeroing in on DeLay, Ron Hutcheson, Knight Ridder Newspapers
Thoughtful bloggers have asked the question: "In the wake of DeLay's departure, will the GOP become more introspective about the "...course of the Republican revolution"?  Nahhhhhhh.....

Update:

Lampson Campaign Condemns DeLay's Goon Squad Assault

Nick Lampson wants Tom DeLay's job representing Texas's 22nd Congressional District. He wants it bad. Especially since he lost his House seat as a result of The Hammer's 2004 redistricting scheme. He's been gaining serious momentum and leads the polls. DeLay's announcement this week that he's dropping out of the race and resigning from Congress in June only enhances Lampson's chances at winning. And that makes many ReTHUGlicans very, very angry. They showed that anger Thursday by disrupting a press conference Lampson held on the steps of the Sugar Land city hall. The city is DeLay's hometown.
In calling on Tom DeLay to immediately resign so a May 13th special election can be held to fill his seat, Lampson's words were drowned out by demonstrators reminescent of the dozens of screaming, bullying GOP thugs who converged on Miami/Dade election headquarters during the 2000 recount. People were pushed, shoved and shouted at. Lampson and his supporters were surrounded by these bullies, who held up hand-written signs that read "Liberal Lampson," "I Stand with Tom DeLay" and "Go Lose Somewhere Else."In an ail sent to supporters, Lampson's campaign manager Mike Malaise said that "DeLay's goons showed up to harass, assault, and intimidate. A number of female Lampson supporters, including Marsha Rovai, a 69 year-old woman from Richmond, reported being pushed and shoved by belligerent DeLay goons at the event.""I can't believe my Congressman, Tom DeLay, would organize this type of assault," said Ms. Rovai. "I was assaulted by two different people. One of the men hit me and another shoved his sign into my face, and then when I pushed his sign away he violently pulled my hat down over my eyes and pushed me. I'm considering filing an assault charge. This is just very upsetting and I'm so disappointed in Tom Delay for organizing this attack." The disruption was well-orchestrated: "Let's give Lampson a parting shot that wrecks his press conference," read a mass e-mail to supporters by DeLay campaign manager Chris Homan. He promised more agressive protests. "Mr. Lampson is going to have to get used to being confronted about his voting record the next seven months." "This incident certainly shows that Tom DeLay continues to try and intimidate the people of this district from speaking out against his unethical activity," Malaise said.Take notice, Democrats. This is just the beginning of the type of brutish intimidation and devious acts the ReTHUGlicans will resort to in order to hold onto power. Fasten your seat belts, it's going to be a bumpy ride.
Juanita's has more
....Lampson's Press release: "Tom DeLay's campaign sent out an email asking supporters to disrupt Nick Lampson's press conference this morning. At that event, a 69 year old woman says she was assaulted by one of the DeLay thugs who showed up to disrupt the event. The woman, Marsha Rovai, of Richmond has asked the Lampson campaign to help see if any of the televisions stations caught this incident on tape so she can consider filing an assault charge. Several of the women at the event complained that they were pushed and shoved by male DeLay supporters.

Additional coverage:

DeLay Reveals Plan To Have Texas Legislature Oust Ronnie Earle

From Think Progress

By Judd

On an interview this morning on Fox News Radio’s Tony Snow Show, Rep. Tom DeLay (R-TX) revealed a plan to have the Texas legislature oust district attorney Ronnie Earle, the prosecutor who charged DeLay with money laundering:

Transcript:
SNOW: Okay, so at this point, you know — are you willing to let bygones be bygones?

DELAY: Absolutely not. Texas should not allow a district attorney from Travis County have this kind of power. And they can take his power away from him because there was the Texas legislature that gave him this power. And I think that will happen in the next session of the Texas legislature.SNOW: Oh, really?

DELAY: Yes.

Clearly —DeLay is not interested in winning his "defense" on merit. DeLay, true to his odious nature and vindictive spirit, is going to try to smear anyone who has dared to bring his sorry ass to justice.

Update from the Washington Post indicates that DeLay could not have won re-election. And the money he had raised would not pay for both legal fees and the high price of campaigning:

DeLay to Resign, But His House Still Stands

Criminally-indicted Rep. Tom DeLay (R-TX) announced last night that "he will not seek reelection and will leave Congress within months." According to DeLay, he has been chosen as a "target" because he was "effective" and accomplished "some pretty amazing things." But the truth is that Tom DeLay's extensive corruption and bitter ultra-partisan activism had finally caught up with him -- costing him his Majority Leader title, turning him into a national political pariah, and eventually shifting his conservative Texas district against him. DeLay will reportedly leave Congress by the end of May, and says he plans to "pursue an aggressive speaking and organizing campaign aimed at promoting foster care, Republican candidates and a closer connection between religion and government." But despite his absence, the House of Representatives will remain the House of DeLay. The overwhelming majority of House conservatives supported the "DeLay Rule" that was "custom tailored for Majority Leader DeLay to avoid stepping down even after indictment." House conservatives rigged the ethics committee to protect DeLay from being penalized. And they rushed to his side with support even after the full extent of his corruption became evident. As Josh Marshall writes, "He's their guy. Their rule rests on his machine. They can run but they can't hide."

Email: "We would meet tomorrow morning at 9:45 am on the first floor of the parking garage attached to the Marriott. Please get folks to call our campaign office 281.XXX-XXXX and let us know they can do it-or e-mail Leonard Cash (in the cc field above) so that we can get some head count. Let's give Lampson a parting shot that wrecks his press conference."
One elderly Democratic woman was slightly injured when she was assaulted by a DeLay protester. The male DeLay supporter first hit her in the face with a sign and then grabbed her hat and tried to pull it down over her eyes. Think about this: Your Congressman asked his supporters to go out and assault old women. Okay, "wreck" them. But, that's all right because one of the Democrats shoved the DeLay protestor away from the elderly woman. We ain't doing non-violent protests when it comes to protecting our elderly.

But that's all right. It's all right. They're just helping prove what a stone-cold hypocrite DeLay and his supporters are. One day DeLay laments the "polarization" in the district and how horrible it is. The next day, he calls a hit. Thanks to the increasingly lawless right wing, a violent cultural war is now underway in America.


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