Down with the ship!


Now that Tom DeLay’s scandal woes are finally hitting the big time, the big question is whether or not the Democrats are actually going to capitalize on all this.

The other day I started fretting that liberal groups were failing to tie DeLay’s corruption woes into a larger story about the way the Republican Party in general has conducted itself over the last four years. The new anti-DeLay ads, after all, offer congressional Republicans a chance to “wash their hands” of DeLay. The worry here is that the GOP will just purge the House Majority Leader, carry on with its rule-bending, K Street-cozying business, and life would carry on as ever before. Well, it’s probably safe to set those fears aside. First the Washington Post reports that conservative groups are all holding hands and lining up behind their fearless leader. Then, over at TAPPED, Garance Franke-Ruta notes that the GOP is doing everything humanly possible to make DeLayism synonymous with the Republican Party. So I stand corrected! It’s not often that the rats actually lash themselves tightly to the sinking ship, but hey, who’s going to complain here…

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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