Wednesday, December 29, 2004
House Majority Leader Denis Hastert is reported to be laying the groundwork to sack the current Ethics Committee Chairman, Joel Hefly, and replace him with a toady of Tom Delay. Earlier this fall, Hefley's committee admonished Delay for his connection to corporate money flowing into Texas state legislative races and other ethics violations.
Evidently, it wasn't enough that Delay had given campaign contributions to four members of the ethics committee. He now wants to sack the committee chair for daring to investigate his questionable ethics. It's a bit like Butch Cassidy appointing the Sundance Kid to be the town sheriff.
I grew up in Colorado Springs, which Joel Hefley represents. He's always struck me as an honest public servant, following the wishes of his conservative constituents but not necessarily towing the line of his party. It would be a shame if Congress removes one of its few watchdogs just because it gave a little bark at the sign of intruders knocking on democracy's door.