AUSTIN, Texas — Embattled Rep. Tom DeLay will move a step closer this week to resolving felony charges against him, but the appeals court hearing may remind voters about his legal troubles at a time when he is trying to win re-election to Congress.
Prosecutors on Wednesday will try to convince the 3rd Court of Appeals to restore the criminal conspiracy and money laundering charges against DeLay that cost him his post as House majority leader last fall. DeLay also has one other money laundering count against him.
State district Judge Pat Priest dismissed the conspiracy part of the charges, saying the conspiracy law DeLay allegedly violated didn't exist at the time of the alleged offenses. Prosecutors say that it did. Both sides will argue their cases before the court Wednesday; DeLay will not attend.
This is a witch-hunt pure and simple. And I would bet a dollar to a donut that the marching orders for this travesty are not coming from the State of Texas Attorney's office. And you could be sure that they wouldn't be even bothering with this had DeLay not won the primary.
(Filed under the fifth column)