Former Republican House Majority Leader Tom DeLay was re-indicted today on a second charge related to the $190,000 in corporate money that DeLay is said to have illegally participated in laundering for use in a number of Texas state races from 2002.
Using corporate money to finance campaigns has been illegal in the state of Texas for nearly 100 years. Yet DeLay, who had previously been indicted on criminal conspiracy charges in the scheme, is now being charged with directly laundering the money. All of which, incidentally, Republican apologist Ann Coulter has no problem with.
Within hours, Mr. DeLay and his aides had been indicted on the new money-laundering charges, which can carry a prison sentence of up to life in prison.
The new indictment was issued as Bush administration officials confirmed news reports in London that the Justice Department had asked the British police to question former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher about the circumstances of her meeting in 2000 with Mr. DeLay during a trip to Britain organized by the Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff.
The interview request was the first publicly disclosed evidence from the Justice Department that Mr. DeLay was under scrutiny in the department's wide-ranging corruption investigation of Mr. Abramoff.