Hastert

LA Times unearths some more dissent in GOP ranks

Two key quotes showing that Republicans are edgy, from today's LA Times:

Congressional Ethics Coalition sends a letter to Hastert and Pelosi

We signed on to this letter (PDF) to House Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) urging that they initiate an ethics inquiry into the stories from this past week involving travel expenses paid for by registered lobbyists and registered foreign agents.

All tied up

The House Ethics Committee won't be investigating any of the new allegations surfaced in the nation's newspapers this regarding Tom DeLay and other members any time soon...

Rumor mill's a-churn'

Unsubstantiated rumors about Tom DeLay. (Thanks to Houtopia for the tip.)

AP: New Ethics Committee chair fires lawyers who investigated DeLay

The story.

Pretty clear retribution here.

Interview with former Congressman Chris Bell on Ethics

With Friends Like These...

The appointment of Rep. Hastings (R-WA) to chairman of the House Ethics committee, replacing Rep. Hefley (R-CO) who allowed the admonishment of DeLay, didn't really surprise anyone--Hastings is a strong ally of Speaker Hastert. Two other members of the committee--Reps. Lamar S. Smith (R-TX) and Tom Cole (R-OK)--have contributed heavily to DeLay's defense fund. With friends like these, I'm betting "the Hammer" thinks those annoying "ethics" charges are now a thing of the past.

Ethics Committee Shake Up

Josh Marshall, as usual, has the details.

In short, Speaker Hastert revamped the Ethics Committee yesterday and tossed three members, including Rep. Joel Hefley (R-CO) as chair (as expected), Rep. Kenny Hulshof (R-MO), and Rep. Steve LaTourette (R-OH), all of who all voted against the DeLay Rule and played roles in the bipartisan investigations into DeLay.

Statement on DeLay Rule Reversal

Public Campaign Action Fund released the following statement tonight on the GOP Congressional majority's actions in reversing the DeLay Rule and abandoning their proposal to weaken ethics guidelines:

Developments

There have been four developing story lines over the past week or so:

1) Sears Roebuck & Co. turning state's witness in the DeLay-related corporate fundraising investigation.