Jun 9 2006

a few more than 3 strikes in this ballgame

After a “favor” filled 22 years, last night, Republican and former House Majority Leader, Tom Delay said his final goodbye’s to the US House of Congress.

In his usual fighting form, “The Hammer” gave another defiant speech, in which he defended conservatism and partisan politics. At one point even going as far as commenting on the recent confirmation of General Hayden as the new director of the CIA stating, “You show me a nation without partisanship, and I’ll show you a tyranny.”

In April DeLay announced his resignation from Congress after two of his former congressional aides pleaded guilty to the bribery charges in the Abramoff scandal. In which some of the reports in the scandal related to the DeLay led golfing trip to Scotland. DeLay contradicted himself in saying that he knew nothing of Abramoff’s actions in any sort, yet DeLay describes him as “one of my closest and dearest friends”, insisting that the charges were the result of a Democratic plot to remove him from office.

Despite being flagged multiple times by the House Ethics Committee, he was never red carded, although being scarred for the involvement in many scandals including:

Killing the investigation into labor abuse in the Marianna’s Islands
Raising corporate cash for TRMPAC
Bribing Congressmen to vote for Medicare
Using taxpayer money for a partisan stunt
Blocking legislation for partisan vendetta
Left ethics behind on European vacation
Tried to change rules to protect power

Regardless of the many claims against him and the allegations that he was involved in risky business, he denies all counts of any involvement in these scandals and states that they were merely slander and defamation to remove him from office.

One of his opponents, representative Barney Frank, a Democrat from Massachusetts; states how even though he loathes DeLay’s politics, he respects his political skills. The Republicans almost never lost floor votes when he was around; if necessary, he would hold votes until he could bully and sweet-talk enough lawmakers into taking his side. “But I think like a lot of true believers who get convinced of the righteousness of their ends, he got in trouble with some of the means.”

To the end of his career he never stopped fighting for what he wanted, for what he believed was right, whether it got him into the deep end or not, nor did he ever regret taking the actions that he took.

“I have scraped and clawed for every vote, every amendment, for every word of every bill that I believed in my heart would protect human freedom and defend human dignity, and given the chance to do it all again, there’s only one thing I’d change, I’d fight even harder.” – Tom DeLay

He went out with a bang in his usual defiant manner and continued his farewell speech. A speech that caused many Republicans to stand in ovation, as well as one that caused many Democrats to walk out. Many Democratic politicians after the speech spoke, that they pray that now – since DeLay’s “stranglehold” on the House has dissipated, that the voices of nearly half the country that have been silenced for the past 22 years, will now have a say in the legislative processes of this nation.