With his extremist politics and his obvious corruption, Tom DeLay appears to many ordinary Americans to be on his last legs as a Republican force in the U.S. House of Representatives. Yet, every time that DeLay seems in danger of being brought to justice, Republican members of Congress close ranks around him and refuse to allow the normal rules of ethics to apply.
Of course, the reason that Tom DeLay has been able to evade the legal and professional consequences of his actions is that he has spent years accumulating power by doling out big favors and big money to Republican members of Congress from across the country. Now that DeLay has been caught with his hand in the cookie jar, he’s calling upon his political allies for favors in return.
Is your member of Congress in Tom DeLay’s pocket? A new web site can help you find out. It’s called, appropriately, InDeLaysPocket.com. This web site ranks members of the House of Representatives according to how much money they have recevied from Tom DeLay, how much money they have contributed to Tom DeLay’s legal defense fund, and how often they cast votes on legislation in cooperation with Tom DeLay.
There are some surprising results. Congressman Sherwood Boehlert, for example, goes to great pains to depict himself as a moderate Republican. Yet, he casts his vote in Congress in lockstep with Tom DeLay almost three quarters of the time. It seems that Sherwood Boehlert represents the interests of Tom DeLay better than he represents the interests of the people in his district in Upstate New York.
This kind of information will be especially important, now that we’re getting closer to the congressional midterm elections in 2006. On Election Day 2006, each and every member of the U.S. House of Representatives will be up for re-election, and we will have the chance to take our representatives out of Tom DeLay’s pocket and send them back home where they won’t do any more harm.