Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Long DeLay

Some months ago, in an undoubtedly perverse state of mind, a trigger set off a query: what ever happened to that fuckwad Tom DeLay? That question alone makes me think, hope, that such a question would trigger in a beery pub poli-chat. I hope this is the case, because I'd rather not discover that I'm secretly wondering about the fate of Tom DeLay alone, and not without inebriation and a bar full of drunken yowlers yowling about those "fucking Republicans! What the fuck is wrong with those guys?" greasing the slide toward wondering about the fate of Tom DeLay.

Last most of us heard, DeLay was indicted in a campaign money-laundering scam -- running corporate cash through the RNC and shunting it back to DeLay's state-based TRMPAC. He scrapped and howled -- partisan witchhunt! cried the witch. Then he resigned. Fox jacked around with him for awhile, but even they finally realized that Tom DeLay needed to be on teevee less.

But still, what happened? Especially, whatever happened to that indictment? Well, some months have passed, the erstwhile bout of DeLay delirium remains just that, and what pops onto the screen at the TPM wire:
State high court backs money laundering indictments in DeLay case.
Asked, and answered, with judicious lag time.

Sadly, the case is not actually about Tom DeLay, but two co-conspirators, similarly indicted.
The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals today upheld the money laundering indictments against James Ellis and John Colyandro in a political ethics case tied to former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, R-Sugar Land.

DeLay was not directly involved in the appeal, but his trial had been postponed while the indictments against Colyandro and Ellis were on appeal. All three men have been indicted on charges of illegally laundering corporate money through the Republican National Committee in exchange for individual contributions to help Republican state House candidates in the 2002 elections.
So, Tom DeLay is still awaiting trial on state money laundering charges. The indictment was filed, Oct 3, 2005.

And this is funny, here's the kind of legal thinking seen in the lower courts of Texas, the kind of thinking that just might help out Tom DeLay.
Judge Sharon Keller said the lower appeals court had "Inappropriately" over-stepped its bounds in a habeus corpus hearing by determining the money laundering law violated Ellis and Colyandro's First Amendment rights of free speech.
"Lower appeals," as in, hairy knuckles dragging on the ground lower. Presumably, buying off judges is also protected under the first amendment. It really is still the wild freaking west out there to some people.

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