Tom DeLay, 66, former House majority leader of the Republican Party escaped prison time on a money-laundering conviction. DeLay was convicted in 2010 of illegal activities in dispensing $190,000 of corporate funds to aid state GOP candidates for Texas legislative elections. He was sentenced to three years imprisonment and appealed his case while on bail. He served no jail time while he was allowed to fight his case and successfully garnered support.
Texas state law does not allow corporations to donate directly to politicians and campaigns. It is believed that the big corporations solicited DeLay, who in turn doled out checks to GOP members in the state legislature thru the RNC for Republican domination in the 2004 elections. It turned out the Republicans took control of state legislature and adopted a redistricting plan led by DeLay, which made way for an influx of Republicans to Congress in the 2004 elections.
The courts threw out the conviction because they said the congressmen appeared to have tried to conform to the law while breaking the law. “The evidence shows that the defendants were attempting to comply with the election code limitations on corporate contributions,” said Justice Melissa Goodwin, Texas Third Circuit Court of Appeals. It is noted that Justice Goodwin was the 1st Republican elected to serve in the role of Justice of the Peace of the 3rd Precinct in Travis County before being selected to the courts.
Former House majority leader, Tom DeLay, escaped the prison sentence based on the ruling of Republican Supreme Court Justice Melissa Goodwin. “The evidence was legally insufficient to sustain DeLay’s convictions,” said the court. It came down to a 2 to 1 ruling in favor of the once most powerful man in the Republican Party.
The appeals courts reversed the ruling of the trial judge and acquitted Delay of all charges. When charges are dropped the defendant does not go to jail, but the incident is noted on the individual’s personal records. With the court reversing the conviction, Tom DeLay will be able to start anew with a clean background record free of any noted criminal activity.
It was said that DeLay was participating in a Washington D.C. delegation prayer meeting upon hearing the news of his conviction being reversed. He stated to reporters, “We were all basically on our knees praying and our lawyer calls and says, ‘You’re a free man.’” DeLay stated he may be done with politics and plans to do work with national prayer organizations. “There’s too much other things that the Lord wants me to do,” he stated.
Tom Delay escaped prison time and the former House majority leader has regained his influence in the community. He has been working with Evangelicals on a national level to organize and formalize a powerful movement to support various interests. It is unclear if the trial judge in the previous conviction was over zealous in his ruling or incompetent in the assessment of the evidence.
By Thomas Barr