Friday, September 09, 2005

[GOP Corruption]

DeLay's Noose Tightens

First, the news:
A grand jury has indicted a political organization formed by the House majority leader, Representative Tom DeLay, accusing it of taking illegal corporate money as he helped Republicans win control of the Texas Legislature and keep control of Congress....

The charge against Texans for a Republican Majority accuses it of illegally accepting a contribution of $100,000 from the Alliance for Quality Nursing Home Care and of $20,000 from AT&T. A prominent statewide business group, the Texas Association of Business, was also charged, in what Mr. Earle called an effort to funnel "massive amounts of secret corporate wealth" into Texas political campaigns.

[DeLay himself was not indicted.]
Now the analysis. I've been pretty shocked by what a pass the Abramoff/DeLay/Ralph Reed axis of evil has gotten on the recent corruption probes. DeLay is, by all accounts, one of the most corrupt politicians since James Trafficant, and one of the most powerful since Joe McCarthy. So why are the Dems sitting on their thumbs?

The heart of the GOP power structure beats in Texas, and DeLay seems to be at the center of it all. If the DeLay is as corrupt as he appears, and the GOP is as enmeshed with him as they appear, why aren't the Dems trying to take down the entire leadership? Outrage over Katrina is useful and pretty easy, politically, but it's not likely to damage the GOP long term. Uncovering Texas' Tammany Hall, however, would drive a stake through the party. So what gives?

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