In what was probably the most unexpectedly ridiculous news story of last week, former TX-22 Congressperson, notorious gerrymanderer and professional bug-killer Tom DeLay will be appearing on this season's sequin-spangled cast of “Dancing With The Stars.” Yes, apparently the recession has hit even reality TV shows, who are now forced to cast disgraced former Republican majority leaders and make them dance the conga.
So in the grand tradition of “We Watch So You Don't Have To,” I'll be tuning in to Tom DeLay, critiquing his moves, and reminding y'all about how very, very, very bad he was for America. Until he gets voted off the show, I'll recap his moves every Tuesday here on Burnt Orange Report. The three-hour season premiere isn't until September 21, but I can't let four whole weeks go by without commentary on this, so let's recap the roll-out of the show.
This Week: Dancing Rap-Sheet to Rap-Sheet
In a strange meta-narrative to this season, rival network CBS reports that Seven Contestants Have Criminal Records:
While the show is sometimes seen as an opportunity to give new life to flagging careers or to rehabilitate tarnished images, the question now is whether the show can clean up the police records of this year's dancing darlings.
Yes, and which criminal tops the list?
First up is Tom DeLay. For those who missed the former Republican Majority Leader's 2005 political meltdown, a refresher: DeLay was indicted by a Texas grand jury on criminal charges that he had conspired to violate campaign finance laws. DeLay pleaded not guilty, but Republicans Conference rules forced the 62-year-old to resign from his position as Majority Leader in the US House of Representatives.
DeLay will be partnered with two-time champion Cheryl Burke. Watch out, Cheryl! DeLay has a history of pushing so hard to the right, he might drop you clear off the darn edge of the stage. But it seems that DeLay is in it to have a good time. After all, he's always looking on the bright side. It's like what he said after Hurricane Katrina to a group of evacuees taken to the Astrodome: “Now tell me the truth boys, is this kind of fun?”
Yeah, if there was one phrase I'd use to describe losing your home and property to a natural disaster made vastly worse by Republican incompetence, it'd be “kind of fun.” Good one, Tom.
But perhaps Texas Democratic Party Chair Boyd Richie had the best response, in his weekly email to party faithful:
The last time most Texans saw former Republican House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, he was being indicted on criminal charges. However, instead of making his next appearance as a defendant in court, he'll be doing it on ABC's Dancing with the Stars as a contestant.
Meanwhile, Kay Bailey Hutchison and Rick Perry keep playing politics instead of working for Texans, tap-dancing around the reality they've squandered 20 years in office instead of helping Texans meet the challenges we face today. The good news for these two career politicians in today's Tom DeLay announcement?
After you've failed Texas, there's always a career in reality TV.
Oh snap! And while we may have to wait a few years for Rick Perry to join the cast of Shear Genius as a hair model and Kay Bailey Hutchison to be part of Ice Skating With Former Senators, at least Tom DeLay will be kept on his toes this fall.