I wish I were happier about Tom DeLay's decision not to seek reelection and to quit the House -- but really, it's one seat, DeLay will probably now be replaced by another Republican, and on a national level it seems impossible to get the public to regard corruption, even at the DeLay-Abramoff level, as anything more than business as usual. I don't blame the Democrats for not doing a better job of using corruption as an election issue -- it's hard; the public just shrugs. Voters respond when one of their own members of Congress is the sleazebag, but corruption in general just doesn't motivate them.
Over at Daily Kos and firedoglake, they're laughing at this comment about DeLay from someone at Free Republic:
He's been much more open about speaking of his relationship with God, and he might have decided he's going to spend the rest of his life working for foster care, and for his Christian values.
Don't laugh -- that's from DeLay's own spin. Time:
Taking defiant swipes at "the left" and the press, he said he feels "liberated" and vowed to pursue an aggressive speaking and organizing campaign aimed at promoting foster care, Republican candidates and a closer connection between religion and government....
DeLay, a Baptist born in the border city of Laredo, said he "spent a lot of time" praying about his decision and that his personal relationship with Jesus drives his day-to-day actions. "My faith is who I am," he said....
Recently, he said, he has been hearing from many people who want his help on projects outside Congress. He said his decision was cemented by the thunderous response at a conference in Washington last Wednesday decrying the "War on Christianity."
Loudly proclaiming Christianity is helping to keep Richard Scrushy out of jail; DeLay seems to be banking on that strategy combined with liberal- and Democrat-bashing. I think he thinks that when and if the noose closes around him, he can go to a jury trial if necessary, or even multiple jury trials, and trump the evidence in the eyes of jurors by portraying himself as God's own vanquisher of liberals. And in Texas, if he does some shrewd jury-picking, I bet he's not crazy to think that.
UPDATE: Based on what DeLay says here, I think it's now glaringly obvious: DeLay's going to wrap himself in religion so that he can eventually get twelve carefully selected good Christians to acquit him (as many times as necessary).