DeLay Sentenced To Three Years In Prison
According to the Washington Post, Senior Judge Pat Priest has sentenced former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX) to three years in prison “for his role in a scheme to illegally funnel corporate money to Texas candidates in 2002.”
In November, a jury found DeLay guilty of money laundering. In 2002, DeLay’s political action committee (Texans for a Republican Majority,TRM-PAC) failed to report $600,000 in contributions, primarily from corporations. It has been illegal in Texas since 1903 for corporations to give money to candidates directly or indirectly. TRM-PAC helped Republicans gain control over the legislature for the first time since the Civil War.
In August 2005, Federal Election Commission audit found that Americans for a Republican Majority – DeLay’s “premier” political action committee, “used more unregulated ’soft’ money than was allowed for fund-raising and get-out-the-vote activities” in the 2002 election.
In September 2005, DeLay was indicted by a Texas grand jury, becoming the first House leader indicted in a century and the highest ranking member to face criminal charges. The charge was felony criminal conspiracy involving illegal corporate political donations. He stepped down as Majority Leader, as required by House rules.