ethics

Conason on DeLay, ethics

Good caution here in a N.Y. Observer piece by Joe Conason. An excerpt:

A fourth reason

Below Rick posted my oped from the Houston Chronicle in which I listed three reasons why DeLay retracted the DeLay Rule.

Let's not be Pollyannas. The Chron, on the editorial page, gave a fourth reason:

What the House did yesterday and today

I have gotten a lot of email about how far Republicans in the House went in backtracking, so I wanted to clarify what they did and what they didn't do.

Most of the attention last night and today centered on Tom DeLay's stunning defeat when he was forced to reverse the DeLay Rule. We should be proud of the role we played in making that happen.

Statement on DeLay Rule Reversal

Public Campaign Action Fund released the following statement tonight on the GOP Congressional majority's actions in reversing the DeLay Rule and abandoning their proposal to weaken ethics guidelines:

Ethics Chair Hefley (R-CO) supports overturning DeLay Rule

Now outgoing Chair of the Ethics Committee Joel Hefley (R-CO) just came out with the Democrats and said he'd support overturning the DeLay Rule tomorrow. Hefley just sealed his fate with the leadership, but he could have just provided the kind of cover the rest of the Shays' Handful (listed below) needed to overturn it.

Charles F Bass NH-2
Jeb Bradley NH-1
Michael N Castle DE
Elton Gallegly CA-24
J D Hayworth AZ-5
Kenny C Hulshof MO-9
Nancy L Johnson CT-5

Here's a good column

If you live in the Tampa-St. Pete area, write a letter to the editor of the Tampa Tribune and praise this column by Daniel Ruth. Among other things, Ruth writes:

Eight organizations hold press conference denouncing ethics changes

Eight organizations, forming what is called the Congressional Ethics Coalition, held a press conference today to denounce the proposed weakening of ethics rules. Here are the organizations with links to their statements:

Campaign Legal Center

Developments

There have been four developing story lines over the past week or so:

1) Sears Roebuck & Co. turning state's witness in the DeLay-related corporate fundraising investigation.

Vindictive

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington -- a great group -- was threatened with contempt of Congress for helping Rep. Chris Bell (D-TX) draft and file the ethics complaint against Tom DeLay, according to the RAW STORY.

Potential New Ethics Charges Against DeLay

Newsweek published an article entitled "DeLay: More Cash—And More Questions." It seems that DeLay, in addition to cramming his war chests full of cash, has been filling his legal defense fund with "donations" from lobbyists (which, according to Public Citizen, is another violation of the House ethics rules but DeLay's office has already promised to return those).