Delay Says, "In the End We'll Give Earle a Good Texas Whooping!"
Representative Tom Delay says that he has served ethically and honorably,
FOX VIDEO HERE
FOX News got the interview this morning:
“I just realized that my constituents don’t deserve this, they deserve a Republican. I think I could have won this seat but it would have been nasty, it would have cost a fortune to do it,” added the man also known by colleagues and voters as “The Hammer.” “The challenge has always been in the interest of the constituents’ cause and the Republican majority. I’m more interested in growing the Republican majority than my own future.”
“The Abramoff affair has nothing to do with me,” DeLay said.
And asked if Ronnie Earle, the Texas prosecutor who has put DeLay in his investigative crosshairs, has won, DeLay said that he might have won this battle, but “in the end, we’re going to give him a pretty good Texas whopping.”
A formal announcement of DeLay’s plans was expected Tuesday at a news conference in Houston. In a video statement made available to television news networks late Monday, DeLay blamed “liberal Democrats” for making his re-election campaign largely a negative one.
“I refuse to allow liberal Democrats an opportunity to steal this seat with a negative personal campaign,” DeLay said. “The voters of the 22nd district of Texas deserve a campaign about the vital national issues that they care most about and that affect their lives every day and not a campaign focused solely as a referendum on me.”
President Bush told reporters Tuesday morning that he spoke with DeLay on the way back from throwing the first pitch at Monday’s Cincinnati Reds’ home-opener.
“It had to have been a very difficult decision for someone who loved” representing his district, the president said of his fellow Texan. “I wished him all of the very best and I know he’s looking forward to — he’s looking to the future.”
Bush added: “Our party will continue to succeed because we’re the party of ideas.”
Here is the transcript from the FOX News video interview from above. This is Delay’s first interview since the news came out last night about his decision to step aside:
Delay: I just realized that my constituents don’t deserve this. They deserve a Republican and I think I could have won this seat, but it would have been nasty. It would have cost a fortune.
FOX News: But, you’ve never backed away from a challenge before. That’ why you got the nickname the hammer. Why not face up to this one?
Delay: The challenge has always been in the interest of the conservative cause and the Republican majority and I am more interested in growing the Republican my own future. I can still be out there working for the Republican majority for the and the conservative movement and not jeopardize this seat.
FOX News: Then why put your district through a Republican primary if you knew you were not going to hang on to your seat?
Delay: I didn’t know that at the time. Remember, I didn’t set the deadlines for filing or the deadlines for the primary. We thought that in December when we had to file for office that we would be in trial in Austin and be out of trial because it would only take about three days to beat Ronnie Earle’s frivolous charges.
FOX News: Some say the “hammer” has gone soft.
Delay: Well, first of all, that is not a name I call myself that is a name given to me by the Washington Post. People who know me know that I am passionate about my party and constituents. I think I’ve been effective and it’s time for me to go do something else.
FOX News: Does the former employees convictions have anything to do with your decision?
Delay: No the Abramoff scandal has nothing to do with me. The Justice officials say I am not a target in this investigation. What those men did greatly disappointed me but it has nothing to do with me… I know that the Left has used this to try to brand me with guilt by association (read any newspaper in the country), but I have always served I think honorably and ethically. I have never broken the law or the spirit of the law. In fact, I am the most investigated man in Washington and they still have not been able to charge me with anything because there is nothing there.
Delay: My liberal democrat opponent has been raising money all across the nation. He’s got Barbara Streisand’s support, George Soros’ support, Nancy Pelosi’s support.
He’s got money from Boston, Chicago, Hollywood, very little money from Houston, Texas. His money will dry up.
This is probably the worst day of his campaign because he knows that any Republican who replaces me on the ballot will win this seat. (Ouch!)
Delay on Democrats: Ha ha! Oh boy, I tell you. This is a Democrat Party that has no agenda. Can’t come up with an agenda. Has no solution. All’s they got is the strategy of personal destruction and character assassination and it hasn’t worked in the past. It isn’t going to work in the future. They are a permanent minority party.
FOX News: Does Ronnie Earle win?
Delay: He may have won this round. But, in the end we’re going to give him a good ol’ Texas whooping. The charges against me are frivolous. I’ve been indicted on laws that didn’t exist at the time. He knows that. This is a totally criminal operation using our criminal justice system for political purposes and political gain. It is absolutely outrageous that Ronnie Earle has abused the Texas judicial system. But, in the end we will beat him. He will once again as he has many times be embarrassed. He will embarrass Travis County and he will embarrass the Democratic Party of Texas.
I feel liberated. I will do what I can to unify the conservative cause.
John at Powerline believes the politically-inspired prosecution of DeLay by Travis County’s discredited DA, Ronnie Earle, is a bad joke.