Breaking News: Delay won't seek re-election
Former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, a Texan touched by a lobbying scandal that ensnared some of his former top aides and cost the congressman his leadership post, won't seek re-election to Congress, a Republican official said today.[update: 4/5/06]
DeLay was expected to disclose the plans Tuesday, said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because DeLay had not publicly disclosed his plans.
x-posted on ePluribus Media and on My Left Wing. This version is also edited to reflect current news.
DeLay will leave his seat and Congress by the end of May. Delay has also decided move to Alexandria, VA, because he didn't want to drag the City of Houston and Sugar Land through the mud.
In the center of the Justice Department corruption probe of DeLay's buddy Jack Abramoff, a former aide, Tony C. Rudy, to Tom DeLay pled guilty (Rudy's plea agreement). But April 2nd, Chronicle ran a piece that could be considered a final blow to the Mighty Hammer. The Chronicle reported that Ed Buckham, a former aide turn lobbiest, was paid $770,000 for lobbying work.
Buckham traded on his close ties to both DeLay and his fundraising organization on at least two occasions to land clients who were trying to get personal time with DeLay.One of Buckham's client was Questerra Corp. of Charlottesville, Va.
In April 2005, AP wrote that Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle dropped the charges against Questerra Corp, which was one of the 8 original companies that were indicted for contributing soft money to DeLay's TRMPAC. Earle and Questerra came up with a plea deal, Earle would drop the charges if Questerra agrees to cooperate with Earle's investigation.
According to the Chronicle:
Questerra was officially launched in November 2001 when Timothy W. Milovich was named its president. Milovich, who lives near Tyler, is a nationally known computer expert who had worked with EDS and Perot Systems and served as a consultant with Informix, Xerox and Stamps.com.Another of Buckham's client happens to be linked to former Congressman Duke Cunningham who is now sentenced to 8 years and 4 months incarceration.
The same month, Milovich donated $7,500 to DeLay's leadership committee, Americans for a Republican Majority. He made the donation one day so he could play golf the next at a DeLay fundraiser in Orlando, Fla.
From 2002 through last year, Group W Advisers paid Buckham's company $630,000 to seek government contracts and earmarks in defense appropriations bills. Group W was owned by Brent Wilkes of San Diego and his family-owned group of defense contractors: ADCS Inc. and PerfectWave Technologies LLC., a company marketing speech recognition technology to the Department of Defense. Buckham became the lobbyist for Wilkes' interests effective on April 1, 2002.Folks it looks like DeLay felt his noose getting tighter by the day.
Within two weeks, Wilkes, his executives and ADCS donated $45,000 to ARMPAC so one of their executives could play golf with DeLay, FEC records show.