DeLay’s Not Out of the Woods Yet

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The Department of Justice may have dropped its case against former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, but he’s not off the hook entirely—at least just yet. DeLay still faces criminal money laundering and conspiracy charges for funneling money into 2002 state legislative races in Texas. The criminal case is up for a hearing next week.

The scheme was part of DeLay’s 2003 effort to redraw the state’s Congressional map to favor Republicans, as state legislators must approve redistricting changes. As the AP reminds us, DeLay and his two co-defendants are accused of funneling $190,000 in corporate money through the Republican National Committee, then back to state legislative candidates, in violation of state law. DeLay blames the “politics of personal destruction” for the charges against him. “I know this is the price of leadership, but it doesn’t have to happen this way…I still have a trial to go through,” he told reporters Monday, referring to the Texas case. “I’m hoping to win that. I know I will.”

Both cases against the man-formerly-known-as-the-Hammer have spent years churning through the system, but the timing of DeLay’s Texas case seems particularly apt, as the next round of redistricting will happen nationwide in 2011, to reflect population changes recorded in the 2010 Census. The American Prospect‘s Paul Waldman has a good overview of the new organizations, both Democratic and Republican, that have raised millions to put their party in a better position for 2011. Stay tuned for my own story on the next big redistricting battle.

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Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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