DeLay conviction overturned
September 19th, 2013
11:22 AM ET
5 years ago

DeLay conviction overturned

(CNN) - Former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay's conviction on money laundering charges was overturned Thursday by a court in Texas.

DeLay, who was once one of the most powerful men on Capitol Hill, was convicted in 2010 for allegedly trying to influence Texas elections by trying to channel nearly $200,000 in corporate donations to Republicans running for the state legislature, which is prohibited by Lone Star state law. Delay, who served more than two decades in the House before resigning in 2006, was sentenced to three years in prison.

"Because we conclude that the evidence was legally insufficient to sustain DeLay's convictions, we reverse the judgments of the trial court and render judgments of acquittal," said an opinion from the District Court of Travis County, Texas.

DeLay was visiting Capitol Hill on Thursday. He was praying in the House chapel when his phone rang and his lawyer told him the news, a source close to DeLay told CNN.

DeLay then headed over to lunch with his former colleagues in the Texas delegation at their weekly lunch.

"He said he felt vindicated," Rep. Randy Neugebauer told CNN as he left the lunch.

The U.S. Department of Justice ended its own investigation of Delay in 2010 without filing any criminal charges against the former congressman. He has been free on bail pending appeal of his conviction.

- CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser and CNN Senior Congressional Producer Deirdre Walsh contributed to this report.

Filed under: Tom DeLay
soundoff (468 Responses)
  1. Data Driven

    Off-topic, but:

    Whew, what a busy day on the Ticker! Several 100+ comment posts. I tend to think it's because the stories featured today have been more substantial than usual. Something to think about, CNN.

    September 19, 2013 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  2. nc_mike

    Just another nail in the coffin – what breeds cynicism.

    September 19, 2013 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  3. Sandy

    This smells like a rotten fish!

    September 19, 2013 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  4. Wade

    So the kangaroo court held by DEMOCRATS failed after all. Now will someone throw Obama in jail since he has done 10000 times worse than this guy ever did?

    September 19, 2013 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  5. Maurice

    I don't only think that the "Rich" person needs to pay for these crimes, but also the people who let them off and then forced to give all their money to the folks that they trampled on to get the money that they basically stole from everyone else.

    September 19, 2013 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  6. Phillip

    Hey Steven,

    I suggest you get some GLASSES to see the corruption and stealing that comes from the GOP before you blame the dems and all of their meetings. Delay runs slave labor in the Marianas and you do not have a clue. All you know how to do is bash the dems. By the way, i am not a dem i am a republican....

    September 19, 2013 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  7. Goony

    The whole thing was a sham. Ol Tom has been exonerated!

    September 19, 2013 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  8. spangdangly

    Texas state justice, bought and paid for by your GOP led chamber of commerce. Do any of you judges have your soul or have you all sold them? Traitors

    September 19, 2013 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  9. OK

    The whole thing was a sham. Ol Tom has been exonerated!


    Just like Casey Athony was.

    September 19, 2013 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  10. michael

    Just another example of Republican political practices. Delay was surely guilty, but with a little help from his cronies, he managed to slither out of jusice. It's hard to believe that Lincoln was a Republican.

    September 19, 2013 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  11. Clear and Present Thinker

    He still guilty by association and, under the McCarthy precedent, that is an iron clad conviction without trial and with no appeal.

    September 19, 2013 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  12. headlessthompsongunner

    It must be the doing of those darn "liberal activist judges" again. RIght?

    September 19, 2013 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  13. MaryM

    It wont be for long.

    September 19, 2013 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  14. peoples choice

    Why should anyone be surprised by this cut and dried ruling? Big Texas money making politicians can buy anything in the most corrupt state among many others. This just gives Delay a license to do whatever he wishes and the tune plays on.

    September 19, 2013 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  15. Fred Phred

    What a shocker.. corruption in Texas?

    If this were you or me, and we had a 2006 trial, we would have been behind bars years ago. How is this guy NOT in jail after a 2006 conviction?

    September 19, 2013 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  16. Texas Eagle

    Finally, there is justice. Tom was and is a good man, a tremendous leader, and a kind person.

    September 19, 2013 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  17. arnold stang

    The court is made of elected officials who are beholden to, oh figure the rest out. Two people overturned the lawful verdict of a jury...Why have a jury if their opinion doesn't matter? These 2 guys can just make all of the calls...this my friend is what I call judicial activism

    September 19, 2013 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  18. WMesser58

    As always the rich get off and we pay for it.

    September 19, 2013 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  19. lonewolf1234512345

    I'm sure the Texas judge told ol' Tom, "Hang in there–as soon as the hubbub dies down, we'll get you off." And you wonder why no one has an ounce of faith in this government or this country anymore. We're brought down one notch at a time, generally by genuinely immoral religious shysters like Mr. DeLay himself.

    September 19, 2013 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  20. Name abie solis

    Hey wade, president Obama is not a liar like tom delay justice. Just because the rest of the world has health ins. Does not mean anerica should.

    September 19, 2013 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  21. liberal disease

    good for him, he was railroaded! its good day! enjoy the celebration you deserve it Tom!!!

    September 19, 2013 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  22. Liz

    Vote online to defund Obamacare, everyvote counts, this one is for Tom. Take back America.

    September 19, 2013 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  23. Gordon Ross

    Mmmmmm GREAT, get him out there and ready for the next Prez election....make even more people run from his party....GO TOM!!! LMAO...

    September 19, 2013 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  24. cbp

    Mr. DeLay had his conviction overturned in Texas while he was in Washington D.C. and of course he visited with the Texas delegation. I am sure he has done that many times. Some of them may have been people who supposedly received funding from him. I don't believe anyone will know the whole truth and Mr. DeLay will not tell us either.

    September 19, 2013 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  25. reasonablebe

    it's texas, what could we expect?

    we're not corrupt (wink, wink) and if you don't agree, it's just tough.

    September 19, 2013 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
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