The sharp knives are drawn, and the weakened King has his days numbered:
Former U.S. Rep. Steve Stockman, who served a single term in Congress after being elected in the Republican sweep of 1994, now wants a shot at Republican Rep. Tom DeLay.
But this time, Stockman hopes to get on the November ballot as an independent candidate against DeLay, of Sugar Land, in the 22nd Congressional District.
Besides DeLay, Stockman could take on the man who ended his brief previous congressional career, former U.S. Rep. Nick Lampson, the sole Democratic candidate in the race.
Stockman and Lampson are among eight candidates trying to unseat DeLay.
Add to this that even the National Review has decided that maybe, just maybe, DeLay should not return as majority leader:
Since 1994 Tom DeLay has led the Republican House majority ably and loyally. Now he needs to perform yet another act of service by not seeking to return as majority leader.***
Republicans underestimate the potential impact of the Abramoff scandal at their peril. One top Republican strategist told us, “There are two types of House Republicans: Those who are in trouble, and those who don’t know it yet.” Republicans have to do more, rather than less, to control the damage.
DeLay can do his part by forswearing any ambition to return to the leadership until this matter is resolved. It may be necessary for the House Republican Conference to discipline other of its members — we have Rep. Bob Ney (R., Ohio) in particular in mind — as evidence of their involvement with Abramoff dictates. (Of course, it is also possible that Justice-department prosecutors have overreached, and will have a problem establishing that typical Washington influence peddling crossed the line into criminality.) Finally, Republicans should embrace a tough reform package that tightens up on lobbying disclosure and cracks down on the earmarked spending that is bait for corrupting lobbyists. A majority that deserves to stay a majority must demonstrate that it is capable of policing itself.
We hope Delay clears his name, and it is notable that he wasn’t explicitly referred to in the plea agreement. The winds frequently shift in Washington and it might be that a year or two from now — leadership elections are held every two years — a clearly innocent DeLay will be poised for a comeback. It will certainly help earn the goodwill of his colleagues if he realizes the wisdom of remaining, for now, a backbencher.
Granted, the National Review piece reads like a Rush Limbaugh Oxycontin-fueled wet dream, because the idea that DeLay is just innocently caught up in this Abramoff mess and will one day be poised for a comeback is pretty damned absurd, but if even they are telling the King to step aside, that should tell you something. It tells me that right now, the king that DeLay is emulating is less Alexander the Great, King of Macedonia, and more Elvis, the Memphis King- alone, bloated, choking on his own excesses, and dying, if you will, on the throne.
Why do you hate freedom, John?
Shouldn’t you be asking the National Review that? If they’re against DeLay they’re against the GOP leadership. If they’re against the GOP leadership they must be supporting the terrorists. QED
Oh man, I have always had a soft spot for Alexander. I have to go scrub out my imagination with bleach now. Alexander with Tom Delay face…oh that is just awful.
Ummm, lots of Republicans dislike Tom Delay and have for quite a while.
Yeah, lots of Republicans disliked DeLay, but they sure loved the results he produced. Now that he can’t produce those results any longer, no reason not to throw him to the wolves.
I never heard a single Republican speak out against DeLay’s tactics of keeping votes open for hours until his side won, threatening Congressmen if they didn’t vote his way, repeatedly breaking the rules of the House just because there was no one to stop him. But now that he stands accused of taking a bribe, it’s all “oh, I never liked that guy.”
John railed against it at the time.
Some of us spoke up.
Forget DeLay–when his Bob Ney going to lose his position as chair of the House Administration Committee?
I mean, if the Republicans really, truly cared about ethics, they’d have dumped Ney months ago.
J. Michael Neal
Contra The National Review, I suspect that the outrage will be greater if it is decided in the courts that none of this behavior crossed the line into illegality. That could be the final piece in the chain that makes all of the legal bribery in Congress a story of major import.
Ummm except Bush himself has declared Delay innocent and hopes he get back ’cause “we got our stuff through when he was in charge”?
The Other Steve
From the National Oxycontin Review:
Oh give me a fucking break. If Republicans cared about damage control, they’d ask Delay to retire and not run for reelection.
Sometimes it’s best to get rid of a fish that is starting to stink, not just stick it in the freezer and hope it doesn’t go bad.
Why do you hate freedom?
I’m glad John linked to the post you refer to, or else I never would have been reminded of you taking the position that Delay’s way of doing things was business as usual, nothing to get excited about.
It is business as usual, and I don’t know why you guys think anyone in Congress is a decent human being who is not neck deep in money.
Must I dig out my favorite Mark Twain quote again regarding Congress.
I visited Graceland this summer and I’ll tell you what, that’s a mighty fine throne to die on nonetheless. Too bad about the legacy. For both of them.
I love freedom.
I hate stupidity.
I love peppermint ice cream.
I hate coconut pie.
I love Jennifer Connelly.
I hate Paris Hilton.
I love the lyrics to ‘Tangled Up in Blue’.
I hate the lyrics to ‘Ice Ice Baby’.
I love Norton I, Emperor of the United States.
I hate Bush the Lesser, would-be Emperor of Jesusland.
Simple as that.
An elaboration of her Majesty Stormy’s view:
When is corruption merely “business as usual?”
Answer: Always. Since corruption is always occuring it follows that it is always “business as usual.” Nothing to get upset about. Unless, of course, it happens to be to your advantage to kick up a stink about it.
Her Majesty’s view has fascinating potentials. Since theft, violence and fraud are constants as much as corruption, perhaps they too qualify as “business as usual”. In which case, the law should only be enforced when it is to your advantage.
Set standards low enough and you’ll never be disappointed.
Thanks for the link, John. I apologize for lumping you in; I actually did try to recall “gee, did John complain about those tactics?” and I simply couldn’t remember. I probably should have remembered that post because I probably commented on it.
I do remember, though, not being able to get a single person at RS to acknowledge that there was anything wrong with these tactics. Even the people I consider reasonable were making dismissive comments like “are you saying it’s against the rules to whip your caucus?” I was pretty disappointed that they wouldn’t acknowledge it was even a little bit shady.
Once upon a time Jim Wright held a vote open for 15 minutes for a perfectly understandable reason and Dick Cheney called it the most outrageous abuse he had ever seen in Congress. Now it’s business as usual and no one bats an eye.
I think the difference is that John Cole doesn’t believe in the “permanent Republican majority” for one second and, in fact, if they don’t clean up their act he’s willing to be first in line to throw the bums out. Whereas others who think the GOP will always be in charge see no reason to cede even one iota of power; if there’s no law against it, go ahead and do it, and even if there is a law you can probably find a way around it. If you’re never going to be in the minority, then there’s no point in worrying about how you would want things to be done if you were in the minority.
The Republicans have abused parliamentary procedure to a truly unprecedented degree and, when the Democrats are back in charge, it will be interesting to see if they give the GOP a taste of its own medicine or if they choose to rise above it. You could make a case for either.
The Other Steve
So how can we hold Congress acountable if you are never willing to step up to question corruption?
Or is it only OK when Republicans do it?
Ted Kennedy got away with a bigger crime becuase of his wealth and influance REMEMBER CHAPAQUEDIC
So did Laura Bush.
The Other Steve
How can we forget? You moonbats bring it up about once every 3 seconds.
And I don’t even like Ted Kennedy.
Is that the kind of leg protectors an EMT wears?
It’s Chappaquiddick. If you’re going to keep defaming that drunkard, you might as well make the effort to speel it right. Sheesh.
When I got into my arguments with the parental units over the holidays about the bush-crap on warrantless wiretaps, sure enough ole Manslaughter Ted got mentioned as the end-all be-all evil liberal complaining about everything Lord Bush does. I had to remind my parents that even Republicans were complaining about the possible illegality of warrantless wiretapping.
He’s like the ultimate boogeyman for the GOP. If you think Clinton’s getting it bad, it’s just peanuts compared to the defamation Pantless Teddy goes through.
Has anyone ever done a tally on Rush’s Insult-a-meter? Who gets defamed more, Slick Willy, She-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, or Ted? My money’s on Ted.
DeLay will keep busy. There are lots of roaches and vermin in the Capitol, and he knows them all by name.
I was on the House side today and the scuttlebutt was that Delay is done.