Hammer Slammer Ding-Dong


Recently indicted House majority leader Tom DeLay isn’t slated to go on trial in Texas until October 21, and who knows what a jury will decide. No matter. DeLay’s being charged on one count of criminal conspiracy to violate state fundraising laws—along with lots of other recent troubles for the GOP—has lifted Democrats, and Republican critics of the Bush administration, out of the political depression that has befallen them since the 2004 presidential elections. “The Delay indictment leads me to believe that the goddess justice may still be alive,” e-mails one veteran Hill staffer, a Democrat.

Here’s a roundup of reactions:

to the fall of Tom Delay. I will never, EVER, get a buzz like the one I got when I read the news of his indictment,” blogged Daily Kos contributor Bill in Portland, Maine. “I tasted colors. I heard flavors. I saw sounds. I floated. And I don’t remember this part, but there’s a $500 fine on my dining room table for “…riding a burro naked down Forest Avenue while yelling `Take that, beeotch!’ It’s weird because normally I don’t say anything during my commute.”

“The Bug Man Gets Indicted,” screams the blog headline by Democratic Leadership Council strategist Ed Kilgore:

The really big picture is that all sort of chickens are now coming home to
roost for the GOP. You can hear them clucking all over Washington: in the
White House, where the FBI investigation of Jack Abramoff is now penetrating
the previously impermeable heart of Bush Era politics and policy; in the
conservative commentariat, which is now torn between defending the
Republican establishment and accusing it of betraying its principles; and in
Congress, where DeLay’s troubles are creating a power vaccum among GOPers
for whom power has been the only unifying principle.

More and more, the Bush Era is beginning to resemble the Harding Era, without the humanizing features of sex and liquor.

“Has Bush Lost Congress?” asked Washington Post White House briefing blogger Dan Froomkin. “His second-term agenda is in shambles. His spending plan for Hurricane Katrina has torn his party apart. Support for his increasingly unpopular war is eroding. His political capital is spent. And now he’s lost his Hammer.”

“The Republicans are crumbling,” the top House Democrat Nancy Pelosi cheered at a news conference Thursday. “They are corrupt. They act in a corrupt way. They have a culture of corruption here. It is about cronyism. It is about favoritism to their friends in contracting, cronyism in hiring, it is about incompetence.

“And that,” Pelosi said, “is from here to the White House.”

“The DeLay court date set,” New Republic writer Michael Crowley blogged Thursday. “Can’t imagine there’ll be much press coverage. . . ”

Marshall Wittmann, a former Christian Coalition strategist and John McCain advisor now a fellow at the Democratic Leadership Council, blogged under his handle Bull Moose writes of “the Gathering Storm”:

Although he is not predicting it, the Moose suggests that the Democrats
could possibly win back control over the House of Representatives and maybe
even the Senate in the 2006 elections. Each day, as yesterday revealed, the Congressional
Republicans more and more resemble the House Democrats of a decade ago—an
entrenched crony establishment out of touch with the country and even their
own principles. The popularity numbers of the Congressional GOP are in the
tank. Democrats have a significant lead in most generic Congressional
match-ups with the Republicans.”

“There’s no way God likes me this much,” gushed liberal blogger Atrios. “Merry Christmas.”

Laura Rozen can be found online at War and Piece.