The Most Powerful Cockroach in the Country

The Baltimore IMC (Independent Media Center), an alternative news site, has a long report on the shady–not to say criminal–history of House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, also known as “The Hammer”, a name he earned with the brutal, dictatorial tactics he used to keep members in line in the House. If you thought Tom DeLay was bad, you were wrong–he’s much, much worse than you thought. Reporter Cheryl Seal, who has compiled a long list of his activities since 2000 for your edification and disgust, introduces it this way:

[I]f you want to get a taste of the sort of people the corporate media routinely protects, check out this ongoing history of Tom Delay’s criminal activity. After reading it, you’ll ask yourself: “WHY IS THIS MAN STILL IN OFFICE?” Followed by: “WHY IS THIS MAN NOT IN PRISON?”

Indeed. A few of the highlights…uh, lowlights:

Delay Tries to Intimidate Supreme Court Judges to Fix Election Outcome”Those who cherish the idea of judicial independence can only be chilled by Mr. DeLay’s utter contempt for it. Listen to him, as quoted in The Washington Post in September 1997: “The judges need to be intimidated. They need to uphold the Constitution.” If they don’t behave, he said, “we’re going to go after them in a big way.” –Bob Herbert, NYT


Nov 28 2000:
Tom Delay Finances Trip of ‘Rioters’ to Florida to Disrupt the Presidential Election Recount

The Miami-Dade thugs included 200 Capitol Hill aides rounded up by Tom DeLay’s staff and sent on an all-expenses paid trip, paid for by the Bush campaign. Right up front on television images were Thomas Pyle, an aide DeLay, and Michael Murphy, who works for a DeLay fund-raising committee. That evening, the vigilantes received a congratulatory call from George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, who joked about the riot. Then Wayne Newton sang to them – unbelievably – in German.


April 27 2001:
Delay Scam Targets Small Business Owners

In a recorded phone message, “the House Republican whip, Tom DeLay, is promising meetings with top Bush officials to small business owners whose donations would underwrite a GOP ad campaign promoting the president’s [sic]tax plan… People familiar with the fund drive say it is part of an effort to raise up to the maximum $20,000 in donations to the party from each donor.” DeLay has been behind several shady fundraising schemes, including the Triad shell corporation, and a Nixonian townhouse operation. Said Larry Noble, executive director of the Center for Responsive Politics, “They’re selling access.” Will any of these donors get to drive a nuclear submarine, like the Republicans on the USS Greeneville?


May, 2001:
Tom Delay Brags That His Strategy Is To Kick People When they Are Down

“He’s lied under oath, admitted to a pathological hatred of Clinton, tries to destroy any who oppose him, has cheated business associates of thousands at least twice, has callously cut off all contact with his mother (who watches C-SPAN every day just to catch a glimpse of her son), wants to force a fundamentalist Christian model on American society, and has an approach to politics that one of his top staffers summed up in a memo: “This whole thing about not kicking someone when they are down is BS – Not only do you kick him – you kick him until he passes out – then beat him over the head with a baseball bat – then roll him up in an old rug – and throw him off a cliff into the pounding surf below!” But Tom Delay goes to church regularly, so that makes it all OK.”


July 2001:
Tom Delay, Former Exterminator, Wants to Allow Extensive and Undisclosed Use of Pesticides in Elementary Schools

According to the Washington Post, “House Republicans vowed yesterday to eliminate a proposal, which the Senate added to President Bush’s education bill, that would require school districts to regularly disclose to parents the use of pesticides on school grounds. Senate Democratic and Republican leaders crafted the measure last month in consultation with representatives of the pest control and chemical industries, school officials and environmentalists. Supporters said it was designed to protect students, teachers and staff from excessive exposure to potentially dangerous pesticides. But Republicans attacked the provision during a hearing of the House Agriculture Committee.” First they put arsenic in our water, now they want to put RAID in our kids’ school lunches. Who’s evil idea is this? Obviously Tom DeLay, whose pre-Congressional career was – you got it! – an EXTERMINATOR


January 2002:
Tom Delay Used Enron Money to Fund Political Racketeering

Tom DeLay, the vicious Republican who organized the criminal Miami-Dade election riot, was on Enron’s payroll big-time. Besides taking $28,900 in over-the-table bribes (i.e. campaign contributions), DeLay also took vast untold sums in secret bribes through his racketeering enterprise, the Republican Majority Issues Commission. (In April, RMIC settled a racketeering suit filed by the DCCC, after running up $450,000 in legal fees.) RMIC, a notorious “527” organization, was finally forced to report its donors in 2000, revealing $75,000 from Enron execs that year alone…Tom DeLay only know[s] how much was laundered through those accounts previously. DeLay’s PAC, Americans for a Republican Majority, got another $57,250.


May 16, 02:
Tom Delay Financial ‘Godfather’ Implicated in Mob Murder

In part three of his Tom DeLay expose, Stephen Pizzo writes in AlterNet that “supporting any form of legalized gambling was not without its risks for DeLay. After all, his public persona was that of a devoted evangelical Christian who supports all that is wholesome and opposes all that is evil. His church-going constituents back in Texas believed that gambling was destructive to families and communities. But thanks largely to Abramoff, the amount of money flowing to DeLay and his PAC from tribes with gambling operations swamped any potential contributions from the Christian right. The risks involved in backing gambling interests came home to roost for DeLay’s friend [and finiancial god father, Jack Abramoff], when he and Tom DeLay’s former aide, Mike Scanlon, suddenly found themselves smack in the middle of an alleged mob assassination in Miami, Florida.”

There’s lots more–Mr DeLay has been a very busy little hypocrite. Check it out for yourself.

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