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Tom DeLay indictment - Essay Example

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Tom DeLay, the House Majority leader, has been accused in commiting serious offence. 28 September 2005 Tom DeLay was indicted in "improperly funneling corporate donations to Republican candidates for the Texas legislature concerning corporate contributions" made in 2002 elections (DeLay indicted, steps down as majority leader, 2005)…
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Tom DeLay Indictment Tom DeLay, the House Majority leader, has been accused in commiting serious offence. 28 September 2005 Tom DeLay was indicted in "improperly funneling corporate donations to Republican candidates for the Texas legislature concerning corporate contributions" made in 2002 elections (DeLay indicted, steps down as majority leader, 2005). The problem is that corporations and unions, according to the law of Texas, have no right to finance legislative compaigns. October 3, it was the second time for Mr. DeLay to be indicted in criminal conspiracy and money laundering in less than a week (DeLay Calls New Indictment, 2005).
While it is not a criminal offence to receive additional funding, becoming charged of conspiracy in a campaign finance scheme has serious implications. Unlawful transfer of company's assets or property to finance election campaigns is strongly prohibited in Texas State. Nevertheless, it was found that the sum $190,000 was transferred from associates of DeLay and companies to the accounts of seven candidates. John Colyandro and Jim Ellis were also accused in violation Texas election law. In spite this fact, "no evidence to support the conspiracy charge was cited in the indictment, which says only that DeLay and two named associates entered "into an agreement with one or more of each other" or with the committee to conduct the funds transfer" (Smith, 2005).
The only evidence presented to the a Texas grand jury was the check in corporate money, but Tom Delay denies the fact that he used corporate funds illegally and conspiringly. DeLay told "I have done nothing wrong. ... I am innocent" He added that "the charges amounted to "one of the weakest and most baseless indictments in American history." (DeLay indicted, steps down as majority leader, 2005). Tom DeLay's attorney, Dick DeGuerin, stated that the money transferred were "lawfully collected from individuals who knew what they were contributing to". Nevertheless, a Texas grand jury insisted that this donation broke the law of the state that says that a Party is not allowed to use corporate money in local election campaigns. According to law, if DeLay is found guilty, the penalty will be of 6 months to two years in jail and a $100,000 fine (Smith, 2005).
This case received publicity and has been blamed as one of the most unethical cases for the recent years. DeLay and his associates were blamed as corrupted members of the House with low political culture and morals. For instance, minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif commented: "The criminal indictment of Majority Leader Tom Delay is the latest example that Republicans in Congress are plagued by a culture of corruption at the expense of the American people" (DeLay indicted in campaign finance probe, 2005).
In the interview, the district Attorney R. Earle commented that he did nothing unethical or immoral indicting Tom DeLay in illegal donations. He said: "The law makes such contributions a felony. My job is to prosecute felonies. I'm doing my job" (DeLay indicted, steps down as majority leader, 2005). Taking into account the reputation and influence of Tom DeLay on political life, it is supposed that the indictment is nothing more than an attempt to weaken the power of Republicans and push him aside political arena. The final decision has not been accepted yet, so DeLay is trying hard to prove his innocence and political reputation of his party.
References
1. DeLay Calls New Indictment 'An Abomination of Justice'. Oct. 05, 2005. Available at: http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,171128,00.html
2. DeLay indicted, steps down as majority leader. Sept. 28, 2005. Available at: http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/09/28/delay.indict/
3. DeLay indicted in campaign finance probe. Sept., 28, 2005 Available at: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9507677/
4. Smith, R. Jeffrey. DeLay Indicted in Texas Finance Probe. September 29, 2005. Available at: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/09/28/AR2005092800270_2.html Read More
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