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SnakebyteXX
01-14-2006, 07:06 AM
Panel had fewer Republicans than one that rejected DeLay charge, voting data show


By R.G. RATCLIFFE and AMY RASKIN
Copyright 2006 Houston Chronicle Austin Bureau

AUSTIN - The grand jury that returned the money-laundering indictment that has been plaguing Republican U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay had more of a Democratic tilt than a grand jury that rejected such charges.

The names of the people who served on the two grand juries were released to the Houston Chronicle on Friday under the state's public information act. Those names were cross-checked with Travis County voting records.

The 14-member grand jury that returned an Oct. 3 money- laundering indictment against DeLay included seven people with a history of voting in Democratic primaries. The other seven either could not be positively identified or had no partisan voting history.

The grand jury that rejected the charge against DeLay four days earlier consisted of four Republicans and two Democrats, with the remainder either not voting in party primaries or unable to be identified.

DeLay's lawyer, Dick DeGuerin, of Houston, has contended that Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle shopped the charges until he found a grand jury that would indict DeLay.

The Sugar Land lawmaker and two of his associates are accused of participating in a scheme to move $190,000 in illegal corporate campaign contributions through the Republican National Committee in exchange for legal donations from individuals on behalf of seven Texas House candidates in the 2002 elections.

DeLay contends the corporate money was legally raised and no money was swapped.

DeLay originally was indicted Sept. 28 on charges of conspiring to violate state election law, forcing DeLay to step down as U.S. House majority leader.

But Earle's office immediately found out it might have a technical problem with the indictment.

That is when his office asked a grand jury under Republican Judge Julie Kocurek to return a money-laundering charge against DeLay.

That panel declined.

Then Earle asked a newly impaneled grand jury under Democratic Judge Brenda Kennedy to return the charge, and it did.

DeGuerin said Friday he thinks the most significant thing about the two grand juries is that the Kocurek grand jury was at the end of its term and was experienced while the Kennedy grand jury was new and had not heard any cases before the day it indicted DeLay.

"The experienced grand jury rebuffed" Earle, DeGuerin said.

Earle declined comment.

Elizabeth Geise, a grand juror on the Kocurek panel said the judge had instructed the jurors not to discuss the case with the news media.

Johnnie Van Dyke, on the grand jury that indicted DeLay, defended the jurors' decision.

"In as much as we did what we did, we felt very comfortable with it," she said, declining to answer any questions.

Senior District Judge Pat Priest in December threw out the Sept. 28 indictment but upheld the money-laundering charges.

DeLay's case came to a halt, however, because Earle appealed Priest's ruling.

That appeal is now pending before the 3rd Court of Appeals in Austin.


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Gayle in MD
01-14-2006, 07:35 AM
If they only had the info on seven of fourteen, then how is that a democratic slant? 6 to 2, republicans were going to let him off the hook, right? Doesn't surprise me. Even if they don't get him in Texas, he's history, thanks to Ambramoff. He fixed it so that the legislation to protect the women and children in the sweat shops in the Marianna Islands couldn't get US protection under our labor laws by seeing the the legislation wouldn't reach the floor. He's disgusting. Nothing but a crook. Even his wife was on the take.

Gayle in Md.

Drop1
01-14-2006, 12:55 PM
So? /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

wolfdancer
01-14-2006, 04:23 PM
Snake, I've heard that you can get a grand jury to indict a baloney sandwich....the indictment just allows the case to be taken to trial, where I'm sure he will get an unbiased jury. If Mr. Delay is innocent of this latest Ab(ramoff)scam.....if pigs can fly.....he should have no problems, expect for the legal fees, which I'm sure he can recoup with his next bribery deal.
If he would like a speedy trial, i'm available to serve on the jury....or I could just mail in my vote now.
We'll have to make sure the jury meets impartial guidelines:
Let's see now...5 dems, 5 Rebs, 2 libertarians,
6 college grads, 6 Ged's
4 whites, 4 blacks, 2 Hispanics (1 undocumented) 1 Jew, and 1 "Turban Bey"
6 Christians, 2 Bhuddists, 2 Islamists, 2 Athiests
Then we have the additional problem of the secondary qualifications.....what if the Dems are are mostly
Atheists, or members of middle eastern religions, and
none of the Republicans have advanced beyond grade school?

Maybe Tom can't get a fair trial, and all of these politically inspired charges should be dropped

wolfdancer
01-14-2006, 04:29 PM
Gayle, who's this Ambramoff....another shady republican?
do we need an Ambra alert ??????