I don’t think I could watch another day of the developing demise of House Majority Whip Tom Delay without comment. Last week The Economist published a stinging article on Why Tom DeLay should go which seemed to only pre-date the intensified interest in DeLay’s alleged ethics violations by a few days.
The Washington Post is now reporting that an airfare and number of traveling expenses were picked up by Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Abramoff looks like bad company according to Salon’s The friend Tom DeLay Can’t Shake, which quotes Abramoff as calling people of the Native American tribes he "monkeys" "troglodytes" and "idiots." This man took money from these "monkeys" and moved them into "nonprofit groups with strong republican ties" such as the Americans for Tax Reform, a conservative think tank.
Perhaps the most interesting part of all this is how DeLay has worked to change the rules of how ethics charges in the House are investigated. It is no surprise taht House Speaker Dennis Hastert was behind many of the changes to House Ethics Committee this past January. Hastert’s own hastertforcongress.org reprints a New York Times article, Fight to Pass Medicare Measure Raised House Speaker’s Profile. The article describes Hastert as the "…amiable, almost invisible sidekick to Tom DeLay."
I’m going to make the bet that we’ll see the death of the political careers of Tom Delay, Dennis Hastert, and lobbyist Jack Abramoff in the next two weeks.