|Tom DeLay- Corporate Whore|
BY JIM HIGHTOWER
Do you love children? Of course you do. Does your heart break for abused and neglected children? Of course it does. Does your heart yearn so strongly to help such children that you'd be willing to make a tax-deductible contribution of $500,000 to (get ready to sob with the joy of charitable giving): Tom DeLay?
Yes, DeLay, the notorious Boss of the Congress, who is nicknamed the Hammer for his heavy-handed raising of corporate political money in exchange for legislative favors. And now, proving that no low is too low for Tom, he has created a charity named Celebrations for Children using abused and neglected kids as a draw for more corporate money.
Tom's charity was set up specifically to be used as a fundraising funnel at the 2004 Republican National Convention, and it has mailed a slick 13-page booklet to corporate donors that appeals less to their charitable instincts than to their greed. The booklet asks for donations ranging from $10,000 to half a million bucks, promising that the CEOs and lobbyists who give will get exclusive face time with DeLay and other key GOP lawmakers during the convention week. Top donors, for example, are to enjoy a quiet spin on a yacht with Tom, plus play golf with him, and get two private dinners with him and his wife, among other special chances to schmooze with power.
To add to the allure, the corporations are to get a tax deduction for their donations, meaning the rest of us taxpayers will get to subsidize their corrupt powerfest. Also, since it's technically a charity rather than a political fund, Tom doesn't even have to tell us which corporations buy into this scheme, much less what favors they'll get in return.
DeLay indignantly says that his charity is not about politics, yet it's being run by his political team, including his daughter and one of his longtime campaign fundraisers. He professes innocence with the same sincerity of a cat with feathers on its whiskers.
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