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This is a drill. DeLay=good. This is just a drill.

Reported by Chrish - April 26, 2005

The mantra continued into Special Report 4/26/05, with Judge Andrew Napolitano hosting. In fact, it was "the big story", opening the hour, with "House Majority leader Tom DeLay getting some top level support, really top support, in his home state."

Fox face Brian Wilson said "One of the questions today was, will the president try to distance himself from the embattled troubles of house majority leader Tom Delay? The answer turned out to be no. (The banner below reads, for over a minute, "Tom DeLay gets support from president Bush". Subtle.) Galveston TX, earlier today; of course there were a few anti-Bush and anti-DeLay protesters outside the president's planned event on Social Security, pretty typical for a president no matter who's the president, but when DeLay arrived inside hall, the mostly Republican (Comment: no kidding? Loyal Republicans, wink wink) crowd offered words of support. Take a listen for just a moment:" (Wilson stops talking, we listen to 5 seconds of hand-selected loyalists cheering a beaming DeLay.)

Wilson continues "And then the president threw out what you have to call a big political hug:"
Clip of Bush "And I appreciate the leadership of Congressman Tom DeLay in working on important issues that matter to the country." (Cheers and applause linger)

Wilson: "And it didn't end there. DeLay hitched a ride on the helicopter and then Air Force One back to Washington, a move that should end any discussion about the president trying to distance himself from Tom DeLay. Now, one of the things swirling around Delay is whether or not a lobbyist ended up paying for a privately funded trip. The poking and prodding into Delays filings has many members of Congress more than just a little bit nervous, and here is why. A new study by released by the on-line service Political Moneyline reported in USA Today reveals that since 2000, private groups have paid for 600 members of Congress to take more than 5400 trips. The total cost: you're not going to believe this, over $16 million. More than half that amount came from groups not required by law to reveal the source of their funding." He says members of Congress are scrambling to make sure all their paperwork and filings are in order, and there was even a seminar offered to staffers. He adds "Again, we have to strees, if filed properly, if no lobbyist or foreign agents are involved in the funding of these private trips, they are considered proper and legal, but I gotta tell you, Judge, with all this information that's starting to come out a lot of people in Washington are starting to raise a few eyebrows about how many trips are being taken by these members of Congress."

Comment: This segment was a twofer. First the support for DeLay,observed in
Donna's earlier post , was reinforced. Secondly, the issue of Tom DeLay's repeated ethical lapses is being covered with the "everybody does it" smokescreen. The numbers produce the desired shock value; I wonder if Fox will tell us the final breakdown of legal vs illegal trips taken by our public servants.

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