A federal judge has ruled that, having won the Republican Primary, Tom DeLay can’t back out (unless, presumably, he gives up his last residence in Houston). DeLay had apparently hoped that be dropping out after the primary, he could effectively pick his successor — or at least deny the nomination to his intra-party critics.
The decision concurred with Democrats — and some Republicans — who said DeLay waited to announce his retirement until after his contested primary this spring to ensure that the GOP detractors who had opposed him would not succeed him. By retiring after the primary, DeLay expected that the party nominee for the general election would be chosen by Republican precinct chairs in his district’s four counties.
Looks like that may have been one plot too many for DeLay, though the Republicans are appealing the judge’s decision.
In February 2005 I gave a talk to some right-leaning college students in Texas in which I advised them not to be like Tom DeLay. At the time, that must have seemed to them like heresy. But I hope they took my words to heart.