The Ed Show -Delay convicted of money laundering charges www.msnbc.msn.com video
DeLay convicted of money laundering charges
By R.G. RATCLIFFE and PEGGY FIKAC
Nov. 24, 2010, 5:26PM
Ben Sklar Getty Images
Former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay answers questions from the media at the 250th District Court during jury selection in his corruption trial on Oct. 26, 2010, in Austin. DeLay had been indicted five years ago on charges that he illegally funneled corporate money to help Republicans in Texas legislative races in 2002.
Share Del.icio.usDiggTwitterYahoo! BuzzFacebookStumbleUponEmail Close [X]AUSTIN – After almost 19 hours of deliberations, a Travis County jury today convicted former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay on felony charges of political money laundering.
DeLay faces two to 20 years in prison on a conspiracy charge and five to 99 years or life on a money laundering charge. DeLay remains free on bail, with sentencing tentatively set for Dec. 20.
DeLay and his family did not react when the verdict was read. But after the court was dismissed, DeLay received a hug and a kiss from his wife. Then, his adult daughter, Dani, buried her face into DeLay's shoulder and began sobbing. DeLay's face turned red as he fought back tears.
DeLay's defense lawyer, Dick DeGuerin, who has claimed no money laundering actually occurred, decried the verdict.
"This is a terrible miscarriage of justice," DeGuerin said. "We will appeal. I'm very, very disappointed. This will never stand up on appeal."
DeLay, as he has from the beginning, said the case was all politics, but said his religious faith is getting him through.
"I'm not going to blame anyone," he said. "This is an abuse of power. It's a miscarriage of justice. And I still maintain that I am innocent. The criminalization of politics undermines our system."
Lead prosecutor Gary Cobb said the jury acted without a political agenda and made a decision based on the facts.
"We thought the citizens of Travis County would see this case for what it was, a corrupt politician who was caught violating the laws of the state," Cobb said.
The case against DeLay originally was brought in 2005 by then-District Attorney Ronnie Earle. DeLay claimed Earle was conducting a Democratic political vendetta.
Earle's successor, District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg, noted that as the DeLay case began, her office won a corruption conviction of state Rep. Kino Flores, D-Palmview. She said the cases together show there is nothing partisan about her investigators and prosecutors.
"This case is a message from the citizens of the state of Texas that the public officials they elect to represent them must do so honestly, ethically or else they will be held accountable," Lehmberg said.
The six-man, six-woman jury promised each other that they would not talk to the media afterward. Visiting Judge Pat Priest assured them he would not immediately release their names.
"It has been conveyed to me by the bailiff that you do not wish to become instant celebrities," Priest said.
One juror agreed to speak briefly to reporters so long as neither the gender nor any identifying features be given away. The juror said the decision was based on the weight of the evidence in the case.
"It was just everything," the juror said.
DeLay and two political aides were accused of arranging to trade $190,000 in corporate money with the Republican National Committee in 2002 in exchange a like amount of money raised from individual donations that the RNC gave to seven specified Texas candidates. Texas law bars the use of corporate contributions in candidate elections.
Tom DeLay wikipedia
Life after Congress
Since leaving Congress, along with tending to his legal troubles, DeLay has co-authored (with Stephen Mansfield) a political memoir, No Retreat, No Surrender: One American's Fight, given media interviews (primarily regarding politics), begun a personal blog, opened an official Facebook page (written in the third-person), become active on Twitter (written in the first-person), and appeared on the ninth season of Dancing with the Stars, the highly-watched ABC television reality show. Previously, in season three of Dancing with the Stars, DeLay publicly campaigned for "his good friend, country music singer, and GOP supporter" Sara Evans, before she withdrew from competition on the show due to her very public and ugly divorce from her then-husband, Republican politico Craig Schelske. On August 19, 2009, while promoting his participation on the upcoming season of Dancing with the Stars, DeLay made political news when he became perhaps the most famous Republican to date to promote the "birther" conspiracy theory about President Obama.
The DeLay-Abramoff Money Trail
Nonprofit Group Linked to Lawmaker Was Funded Mostly by Clients of Lobbyist
The U.S. Family Network, a public advocacy group that operated in the 1990s with close ties to Rep. Tom DeLay and claimed to be a nationwide grass-roots organization, was funded almost entirely by corporations linked to embattled lobbyist Jack Abramoff, according to tax records and former associates of the group.
Craig Schelske sex pervert
Okay, so maybe this is not the most relevant story we have ever run. But Schelske does contribute to an increasingly visible pattern of obviously disturbed individuals hiding behind the cloak of so-called conservative values. Plus, one of our readers notes that one of the few candidates his PAC has supported just happens to be Rep. John Shimkus - the chairman of the. . . House Page Board! There are also several pictures of Schelske schmoozing with various important people, including President Bush on at least two occasions.
Dancing with the stars gossip
After filing for divorce and accusing her husband, Craig Schelske, of cheating on her (a charge he also levels against her), Sara Evans, 35, dropped out of the show, she said, to be with her three children. But on Nov. 6, she performed, looking radiant, in Nashville at the Country Music Awards. She is expected to appear on the Dancing finale Nov. 15. Assuming she and Schelske, 43, reach an agreement, the earliest that her divorce could be granted is Jan. 10. (The couple have already agreed to split a $274,000 joint account so he can find housing.) In the end the divorce could have a positive effect on her career. Says Nashville Star judge Anastasia Brown: "A divorce [can make an artist] more of a household name if the music is good enough to back it up—and she's one of Nashville's more revered artists."
Sara Evans wikipedia
On October 12, 2006, Evans left Dancing with the Stars, citing personal reasons, and the following day it was revealed that Evans had filed for divorce from her husband of 13 years, Craig Schelske. Documents filed by Evans' husband accused the singer of having close to a dozen affairs, including singer/songwriter Richard Marx, country star Kenny Chesney, Dancing with the Stars partner Tony Dovolani, various members of Evans' band, and four of the five members of the rock band 3 Doors Down. A representative for Chesney called the allegations "ridiculous," and Kirt Webster, a spokesman for the rock band 3 Doors Down, stated that the accusations are "ludicrous" and "untrue" and that the band members "are saddened by what she's going through." 
On September 28, 2007, the divorce between Evans and Schelske became final. Evans will pay him a minimum of $500,000 in alimony over a ten-year period. Evans was awarded custody of their three children with visitation rights to Schelske.
An ex-nanny of Evans', Alison Clinton Lee, sued her for $3 million, claiming that Evans has smeared her name by including it in her divorce papers as one of the many women Evans claims her husband had affairs with. The case was settled in July 2009, for $500,000.
On February 25, 2010, Evans obtained a restraining order against Schelske. Documents say Schelske is not allowed to make any derogatory statements about Evans to the media or make allegations about what led to their divorce.