Congressman Tom DeLay has chosen to end his tenure as U. S. Representative for the 22nd District. This announcement comes amidst a tumultuous time for the lawmaker. In recent months, DeLay has been embroiled in a lobbying scandal investigation and named in lawsuits charging DeLay with violation of the State’s election law.
DeLay broke his news to Time Magazine where he announced that he’s planning on leaving Congress within months. If he leaves before his current term expires, voters in parts of Fort Bend, Harris, Brazoria and Galveston counties will go to the polls and chose a successor. DeLay had been scheduled to face former Democratic Congressman Nick Lampson in the General Election in November.
DeLay told Time that he’s “very much at peace” with his decision. He said after considerable prayer and discussions with his wife Christine, he decided to spare his hometown any potential unpleasantness. He went on to say to Time Magazine, “This had become a referendum on me,” … “So it’s better for me to step aside and let it be a referendum on ideas, Republican values and what’s important for this district.”
Until months ago, DeLay was one of the most powerful people in America. In recent weeks, DeLay’s fall from power has been stunning to political watchers. He handed over his lofty title of Majority Leader in September after being indicted on charges that he was attempting to sidestep Texas election laws.
DeLay was a famous vote-counter in the halls of Congress and a recent poll done by his own campaign gave him a 50-50 chance in November’s general election.
DeLay told Time Magazine, “I’m a realist. I’ve been around awhile. I can evaluate political situations…” …..”I feel that I could have won the race. I just felt like I didn’t want to risk the seat and that I can do more on the outside of the House than I can on the inside right now. I want to continue to fight for the conservative cause. I want to continue to work for a Republican majority.”
DeLay still has a legal fight in Austin for the possible violation of Texas election laws.