Thursday, April 14, 2005

Tom DeLay backs down - a little.

The litany of Republican politicians who have criticized Tom DeLay (recently including Newt Gingrich)appears to have reached him, and he has decided that he will not survive just by blaming the Democrats for his troubles. Mike Allen of the Washington Post reports today that he has apologized for his intemperate remarks about making judges pay for the Terri Schiavo decisions.

As I read Mike Allen's story, rather than an apology Tom DeLay has grudgingly stated that he should not have said what he said the way he said it, but he has not apologized for the contents of his remarks.

Still, the key to what Allen wrote is this: "People who are working in support of DeLay's position said the next several days would be critical, as leaders wait to see whether any other House Republicans call for his resignation."

If he survives the next few weeks, he will probably make it to his next election in November 2006. Either way he is an asset to Democrats. If he resigns as Majority Leader, the Republicans are going to find it difficult to locate a replacement as effective as he has been at holding them together. If he survives to November 2006 he is going to be the face of the Republican Party and every Republican running for election will have to defend their association with him. Either way he is going to cost the Republicans seats in the House in the next election.

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