Monday, April 03, 2006

DeLay won't seek re-election, will resign from Congress

Cross-posted at new blog.

Tom DeLay will not seek reelection, according to TIME. A year and a half ago, we came to the conclusion that Tom DeLay was not fit for public office. His fundraising excesses led to numerous Ethics Committee violations in early October 2004. We asked our members, "Should we engage in a public education campaign in Tom DeLay's district? And they responded resoundingly "Yes!"

And we, together, began that campaign. At the time, Washington insiders thought we were crazy. In October 2004 we were told, Don't waste your money, don't waste your time; DeLay will never lose that seat, nor will he ever relinquish it.

But our members told us then, If we don't take on Tom DeLay's arrogance and Tom DeLay's big money agenda, then why do we , as an organization, exist?

So together we fought DeLay's big money agenda before it was self-evident to do so. We had some allies, like Democracy for America. We set up a blog called the Daily DeLay before he became one-and-the-same with the culture of corruption. We ran advertisements in DeLay's backyard before progressives found out that Tom DeLay was a good "fundraising tool." And, along with Josh Marshall, we led the charge against the DeLay rule when Republicans tried to give him a get out of jail free card. More allies were with us then, including MoveOn. We're proud of our work, and the work of others along the way, in blazing a trail of accountability.

Tonight, TIME magazine's Mike Allen, who did some of the best reporting on DeLay, along with many others, in an exclusive interview, that Tom DeLay will not seek reelection and will resign from Congress.

The story tonight is that a politician reached too far, broke too many rules and laws, and people had enough. They had enough around the country and they had enough in his district.

Let's be honest: DeLay is in legal trouble because of his own actions. But he is in political trouble because we wouldn't sit back and let the chips fall, and because we wouldn't just write off a district, despite the odds.

DeLay hints that he'll be back fighting from the outside. I think we ought to keep our eyes on that. This man, with his corrupt ways should have no part in the publi cpolicy arena. Keep him away from our taxdollars, thank you very much.

One last note: If we don't go after the DeLays of the world, regardless of electoral or partisan considerations, shame on us. If we don't fight DeLay-ism, we sentence ourselves to a repeat of history.

More later.


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