Wednesday, April 5, 2006

Pride Goeth…

The reason Tom DeLay decided to quit was because they took all his toys away and it wasn’t fun any more. Not only that, he wanted to make sure that he trashed the joint and make it hard for any other Republican in his district to beat him.

Under siege from state and federal probes into his actions and those of his closest aides and advisers, Rep. Tom DeLay had considered resigning on several occasions over the past four months. But he waited until after he had vanquished his challengers in the Republican primary to deny them the chance to become his successor, associates said.

[…]

They also cited what the Texas Republican has privately described at his frustration at no longer being a part of the House leadership, and his diminished satisfaction with rank-and-file congressional life. The lawmaker was forced to relinquish the post of majority leader after being indicted in Texas on a felony money-laundering charge last October; he had served in the job since 2002 and had been majority whip before then.

DeLay’s decision allowed him to set the terms of his departure, avoiding what could have been a personally devastating loss at the polls in November. DeLay was determined to hang on to his seat at least through the primary, said Carl Forti, spokesman for the National Republican Congressional Committee. That was because he considered his three Republican challengers gadflies and traitors and he was determined to try to block them from succeeding him.

And the only reason he hung on this long was to shake down more people to pay for his legal defense.

An additional impetus for putting off the resignation until now was suggested by John Feehery, a former aide to DeLay and House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.). “He needed to raise money for the defense fund. That was the bottom line,” Feehery said. “He wanted to make sure he could take care of himself in the court of law.” Under federal campaign rules, any reelection money a lawmaker raises can be used to pay legal fees stemming from official duties.

So all this talk about “doing more outside of Congress than inside,” and blaming all his troubles on “liberal Democrats” is just a steaming pile of bullshit — as if you were expecting anything else. He was in it for himself alone and when he got caught he resorted to the typical infantile excuse of pointing his finger at everyone else. He is a prideful, selfish, and egomanical little man who got his way through bullying and intimidation without any regard for anyone other than himself and was perfectly willing to stomp on anyone — including his fellow Republicans — to get his way.

What’s even more telling is that even still, after his announcement, his allies in the Religious Reich and the House leadership are labeling him as a “man of courage and commitment” and “a great friend and ally.” It’s no surprise that people like Rick Scarborough, the head of Vision America (the folks behind the “War on Christians” movement), think he’s a wonderful Christian; this is the guy who thinks gays are the scourge of the earth. And of course the House leadership isn’t going to denounce him as long as he still has his parking permit; they’ll wait until he’s actually gone before they all start singing the aria of “I was against him before I was for him,” followed by the lovely and haunting ballad of “I really didn’t know him all that well.”

Trust me, we’ll be happy to offer them many reminders between now and November.

(HT to AMERICAblog)