The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Thursday, July 06, 2006

DeLay's ballot plan backfires

DeLay stuck it out through the Republican primary in his home district before announcing that he was leaving office and wouldn't seek re-election. It was a handy way to keep the checks coming in, and he needs them for his legal defense fund. But it left a lot of angry lobbyists in his wake, and now it may have lost the GOP a House seat.

A federal judge ruled today that Republicans cannot replace former U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay on the ballot for the 22nd Congressional District race.

U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks, a Republican appointee, ruled that DeLay must appear on the Nov. 7 ballot as the GOP nominee for the congressional seat that DeLay abandoned last month. Sparks ruling was confirmed by Texas Democratic Party spokeswoman Amber Moon. (. . .)

DeLay already had won the Republican nomination for re-election to his district when he resigned from the U.S. House on June 9. Texas Republican Chair Tina Benkiser declared DeLay ineligible because he had become a resident of Virginia, and she started the process of replacing DeLay on the ballot.

The Texas Democratic Party sued, claiming Benkiser had no authority to declare DeLay ineligible.

The Democrats said DeLay's eligibility is determined by the U.S. Constitution as to which state DeLay is an inhabitant of on election day, Nov. 7. They said DeLay also could not withdraw from the race because state law does not allow a party's nominee to withdraw when another political party also has a nominee.

It's always nice to see someone with as much contempt for the law as DeLay hoist by his own petard.