In response to the news that Reps. Cole and Smith were recusing themselves, Public Campaign Action Fund put out the statement below:
Watchdog Group Calls on Hastert to Appoint Outside Counsel on DeLay
WASHINGTON, May 4 -- Public Campaign Action Fund called on House Speaker Dennis Hastert to appoint an outside counsel to investigate Tom DeLay, and released the following statement from David Donnelly, its National Campaigns Director, on the decision by Representatives Tom Cole and Lamar Smith to recuse themselves from the Ethics Committee investigation into Tom DeLay's scandals:
"Congress has proven that it cannot police itself when it comes to matters of abuse of power. We call on Speaker Hastert to appoint an outside counsel to investigate Mr. DeLay.
"If Speaker Hastert rejects this call, he should use this test to determine who will review Tom DeLay's actions: Any member of Congress who has made a contribution to Tom DeLay's legal defense fund or received a contribution from his political action committee should be ineligible to sit in judgment of Mr. DeLay's unethical behavior.
"Nowhere in America but in Congress can a jury be bought by the defendant."