August 16th, 2010
04:32 PM ET
8 years ago

Ex-Rep. Tom DeLay says long-running investigation ends with no charges

Washington (CNN) - The long-running federal criminal investigation of former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay has been closed, and no charges will be brought, DeLay said Monday.

"I'm pretty thrilled; I'm very happy for my family, they don't have to go through this anymore" DeLay told CNN's Wolf Blitzer in an interview for The Situation Room.

The Justice Department, as is standard practice, declined any comment on the closing of the probe by its Office of Public Integrity after six years.

DeLay said his legal team had received word from the Justice Department last week.

"I never did meet with anyone from the Justice Department, even informally," DeLay told reporters Monday in a conference call. "They never contacted me throughout the process. They didn't have anything."

The Texas Republican said he had turned over more than 1,000 documents and all of his computers to federal investigators, and had instructed his aides to fully cooperate with the investigation.

DeLay was under investigation for his ties to lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who pleaded guilty in 2006 to fraud, tax evasion and conspiracy to bribe public officials. Abramoff admitted defrauding Native American tribal clients of millions of dollars for help in gaining casino licenses.

DeLay insisted Monday that he had informed Abramoff that "our relationship is over" when he learned of Abramoff's plans for casinos aboard cruise ships. He also told reporters that during a visit to a casino on a Choctaw reservation he was "disgusted" when he saw a long line of baby carriages lined up while parents were gambling at 11:30 p.m.

DeLay's legal troubles are not over. He still faces a charge in Texas relating to campaign fundraising. The Travis County prosecutor has charged DeLay with illegally funneling corporate campaign contributions through the Republican National Committee to Texas Republican candidates in 2002.

DeLay says he is currently assisting the Tea Party movement with fundraising by making personal phone calls. He says he still is operating a consulting firm with "both corporate and conservative clients."

While DeLay was celebrating Monday, the advocacy group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington blasted the development.

"It's a sad day for America when one of the most corrupt members ever to walk the halls of Congress gets a free pass," said Executive Director Melanie Sloan.

Filed under: Justice Department • Tom DeLay
soundoff (63 Responses)
  1. the real ib

    Obama should give him a cabinet position. He would fit right in with the others in Obama's cabinet.

    August 16, 2010 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  2. Yates

    I have to laugh. Just proves they had NOTHING the whole time or they would have continued to pursue charges. Just liberals trying to suppress conservatives – nothing more. By the way, the deal in Travis County is another run away liberal prosecutor. I went to school in Travis county (UT) 4 yrs undergrad and two yeas for MBA and it is a liberal bastion. It will be toast soon to as soon as voters get tired of funding that moron but Austin (California in Texas) isn't know for having great sense in those areas.

    August 16, 2010 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  3. steve

    Scumbag regardless of whether he got jailed,

    August 16, 2010 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  4. delay

    Naqib, bon voyage on your departure from reality. Dem-driven railroad job? Tom DeLay? hahahaha careful, your crazy is showing... He's not off the hook yet – read the story people, nor likely will he be.

    August 16, 2010 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  5. rob

    Hey Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, I think you are better off INVESTIGATING your Democrat bosses in Congress. Delay's charges in Texas are nothing more than a Political Vendetta and will amount to nothing, but we have real Corruption being investigated right now that was committed by LEADERS of the DEMOCRAT Majority in Congress.


    Its going to fun to watch these dispicable Democrats lose their majorities this November.

    August 16, 2010 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  6. The Other Micheal in Houston

    So he bought himself a non conviction, he still a crook.

    August 16, 2010 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  7. Lori in St Pete

    Get a clue rethugliban! The "libs" weren't in the majority six years ago, nor were democrats. It wasn't the "libs" who brought the claims against him, nor was it democrats. It was a "lib" DA appointed by an alleged democratic president that dropped the investigation. Honestly, it's exhausting laughing at so much rethugliban tripe.

    August 16, 2010 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  8. Bobby Frank-Dallas TX

    Texas is pretty much controlled by Republicans....... so there you are!

    August 16, 2010 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  9. rob

    Hey Dumbasrocks [R]s

    Delay was forced to resign his seat in Congress by his own party just because he was being investigated, He has spent eight years answering these BOGUS charges and spent probably millions defending himself. The charges in Texas are baseless. I hope he does run again just to rub it in your hatefull, spitefull, vile, intolerant liberal face.

    Reid, Pelosi and the rest of the Dem leadership will be cast out of power in November by the American People regardless of all the lies and smears the dems will throw around.

    The Democrats can only be elected by deception and division.

    August 16, 2010 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  10. Naqib


    I'm more interested in Rangel/Waters...
    Since they are still in office... and matter

    Funny... they've investigated 5 years to come up with nothing... and have held off three years to investigate Rangle... corrupt parties are in no hurry to look at thier own

    August 16, 2010 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  11. Sniffit

    "Just liberals trying to suppress conservatives – nothing more."

    Are you retarded? Seriously. 6 years of investigation means this started in 2004ish when the GOP controlled both teh Congress and the WH...ergo, the GOP investigated this guy. Grow the heck up you pantwetting nincompoop.

    August 16, 2010 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  12. Sniffit

    "The Democrats can only be elected by deception and division."

    Yeah, because that's clearly what Obama did to get elected in November 2008. Do you even listen to yourselves speak or do you just set your tinfoil hats to "download" and your mouths to "run" with a pass-through cable that bypasses any stops along the way?

    August 16, 2010 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  13. jeff george

    What a crock. DeLay wanted to do some fund raisers on boats parked on the water outside the GOP convention where contributors were buying access, and even his colleagues told him he was going too far. He lobbied for interests that had nothing to do with his district, because of the money coming in. This is along the same lines as Palin or Ted Stevens, saying that they were "totally exonerated" when in fact there simply wasn't enough evidence of CRIMINAL wrongdoing for a prosecutor to take a chance, while in fact there was plenty of evidence of ethics violations

    August 16, 2010 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  14. Sniffit

    BTW, do a little research on the history of what was going on at the time the investigations started. Aside from the fact that he did some things that clearly merited investigation (and may still merit some slaps on the wrist...since we know that's all he'll ever get), he was an inconvenience to Bush, Cheney and other neo-conservatives who wanted him out of the way. It's not even arguable.

    August 16, 2010 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  15. blue

    Tom Delay not guilty? Pleasseeeeee!

    August 16, 2010 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  16. Joe Gaines

    in the beginning there was darkness before light God said let there be a crook then there was TOM DELAY a crook from the beginning a crook now and a crook until his returns.

    August 16, 2010 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  17. Operation Crush Rush

    ABush judge noless,hahaha

    August 16, 2010 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  18. Lori in St Pete

    Ack! Holder is AG, not DA! Dealing with all so much rethugliban stupid is taking its toll!

    August 16, 2010 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  19. Sniffit

    That's right...6 years ago...when the Republicans controlled Congress and the WH and, when they became aware of the pending charges against DeLay, they changed the rules so that you could still be in Congress while under investigation for a felony. Look it up.

    August 16, 2010 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  20. Michael

    Another liberal witch hunt put to bed. You could write a book on the new democratic politics of ruining those with whom they disagree through erroneous charges. Delay, Rove, Palin and the list goes on.

    August 16, 2010 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  21. Bobby Ray

    The gap between what is legally prosecutable, and what is ethical can be huge. Given Delay's background, it is probably gargantuan.

    August 16, 2010 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  22. Captain Awesome

    So can we all assume that this was nothing more than a witch hunt by the Justice Department? All of that wasted tax payer money for nothing. I'm happy for Tom Delay.

    August 16, 2010 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  23. Rob

    Too bad. You actually have to have comiited a crime for juries to convict you. I am anxious to see some action on Waters and Rangel too since they actually committed offenses instead of being just political attacks.

    August 16, 2010 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  24. Yates

    I am serious. Not only serious but humored, happy and totally unsurprised they dropped the case since they had no case. Dept of Justice and Congress are not one in the same in case you are unaware. Either way it is fodder, toast, history...

    August 16, 2010 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  25. Mike PA

    All those of you who know Tom Delay to be guilty, hurry up and call District Attorney Ronnie Earle. I'm sure he will put you on the stand in front of a new Grand Jury and use your unimpeachable evidence that you will present to bring another indictment.

    August 16, 2010 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
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