Tuesday, June 21, 2005
Delay had been out of the news for the past couple weeks. There were a rush of stories about his dealings and his campain's financial actions, and the bad press about him was intense for about two weeks. After that, the story seemed to die away without a conclusion, and the media was onto it's next big thing. This seemed to be how many of the things that logically could have brought down powerful republicans in the past few years. The story gets intense coverage for a short ammount of time, and is then just left to die, and everyone forgets about it. There is now another break in the Tom Delay case however. It has now been brought to light that Delay has not reported donations from casino rich Native American tribes.
ELTON, La. - A casino-rich tribe wrote checks for at least $55,000 to House Majority Leader Tom DeLay's political groups, but the donations were never publicly disclosed and the tribe was directed to divert the money to other groups that helped Republicans, tribal documents show.
Lobbyist Jack Abramoff, now under criminal investigation, told the Coushatta Indian tribe, a client, to cancel its checks to the DeLay groups in 2001 and 2002 and route the money to more obscure groups that helped Republicans on Medicare prescription drug legislation and Christian voter outreach.
DeLay's Texans for a Republican Majority and Americans for a Republican Majority never reported receiving any checks from the Louisiana tribe to federal or state regulators, their reports show. The donations, however, are recorded in memos and ledgers kept by the tribe.
"Enclosed please find a check for $10,000 to the Texans for a Republican Majority. This check needs to be reissued to America 21," Abramoff wrote the Coushattas in a May 2002 letter obtained by The Associated Press.
America 21 is a Nashville, Tenn.-based Christian group focused on voter turnout that helped Republican candidates in the pivotal 2002 elections that kept DeLay's party in control of the House.