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September 28, 2005

Ding Dong Delay is Dead

..okay, or at least indicted and wounded.

Hopefully, this means that the sleaze of the GOP leadership will add to the discrediting of their policies, but I've always been skeptical of politics by criminal indictment. Taking out individual opposition leaders does little if others can just step up to the plate.

The hope is that the indictment can be politicized by tying Delay's crime of conspiracy around illegal corporate fundraising into a more general critique of the GOP's pro-corporate agenda. But will most Democrats be willing to bash the corporate donors involved who they are also often courting for corporate dollars.

The question Delay defenders will inevitably ask is what's so wrong with companies contributing to political campaigns? Unless what the companies were doing is morally wrong, it will be hard to get that much political hay out of the fact that Delay helped facilitate those contributions.

So a narrow focus on Delay might get him indicted, even convicted, but it won't hurt the GOP that broadly. Do what's needed is a clear focus on who the companies contributing the money were and what they got from doing so.

THAT is the story that converts a political he said-she said political fight into a meaningful symbol of Republican corporation corruption

Posted by Nathan at September 28, 2005 02:04 PM