Tuesday, April 4

DeLay Still Fighting

As I'm sure you've all heard, Tom DeLay has announced his resignation from the House this morning. I must say, I'm a bit disappointed, especially after he soundly won the recent primary in his district and, though as he says, the campaign would have been nasty, he likely could have still won the seat in November.

I've admired Tom DeLay for his strength and ability to get the job done all these years. As a Republican, I've always felt that the House did a great job acting like Republicans. We had elected Republicans for a reason, right? (Unlike the Senate, where most Republicans are wimps who would rather get along with Ted Kennedy than pass bills that their constituents elected them to support...) DeLay, as Senate leader, deserves a lot of credit.

But I can't help wondering now if there is some credibility to some of the charges against him. He's always been a fighter, after all. If innocent, why wouldn't he fight for the seat he could still probably win? It's not like we don't need him back in the House! His surrendering like this leads me to believe there is some truth to the charges against him. Either that, or he's more noble than we thought, giving up a seat he feels may be at risk because of the corruption charges for the greater good of the party... We'll see.

Update: I have to amend what I've said above. After further reflection, a smackdown from Rush about this on the radio today, and seeing some of his interview with Brit Hume, I no longer think DeLay gave up; he's still fighting. DeLay was definitely concerned about reelection and how the Democrats would have a field day with his "culture of corruption" story, whether or not he's proved to be guilty. (Proof, as you know, is often irrelevant to Democrats and the media.) He only won his primary by 60% (in a heavily Republican district) and knew the charges against him would be the main campaign issue. He also knew that it would indirectly hurt Republicans all over the country because he would be an easy "culture of corruption," well-recognized name for the Democrats to squawk about.

I'm not saying DeLay did this from truly altruistic intentions. He did it because, strategically, it's the only way he feels he can win and he's not giving up the fight. During the interview with Hume, he pointed out the old mug shot story --how the Democrats had t-shirts and posters all ready to print with his mug shot on them and what did he do? Gave them a great big smile. He mentioned someone having made a film all about the charges against him (I imagine the film is as fair as Farenheit 9/11), ready to bust it out during campaign season to smear him and further publicize the so-called "culture of corruption." Now the movie's no good; money wasted, etc. because he's not running. DeLay was almost laughing when he said this to Hume; I thought he was going to turn back to the camera and shout "in your face!" I definitely did not see a defeated DeLay during this interview. I saw someone still confident, seemingly sure of his own innocence, and still ready to rumble. We'll see how it all shakes out.

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