House Majority Leader Tom DeLay was indicted by a Texas grand jury Wednesday on a charge of conspiracy to violate campaign finance laws. Following the indictment, DeLay announced that he would temporarily step down from his post as House Majority Leader.
The indictment alleges that $190,000 was illegally funneled from six corporations through DeLay’s nonfederal group and then transferred to the Republican National State Elections Committee.
All of these transactions took place through DeLay’s 527 group called Texans for a Republican Majority. These 527s are nonfederal fundraising accounts formerly used in elections by candidates and parties. Their use by parties and candidates for federal office was banned, effective after the 2002 election.
The $190,000 transfer to the Republican National State Elections Committee in September 2002 was reported to the IRS by the 527 group.
Links to these donations as referred to by the Texas grand jury appear below:
- Diversified Collection Services, Inc. ($50,000);
- Sears, Roebuck and Co. ($25,000);
- Williams Companies, Inc. ($25,000);
- Cornell Companies, Inc. ($10,000);
- Bacardi U.S.A., Inc. ($20,000); and
- Questerra Corporation ($25,000).
All 527s connected to DeLay are listed below, with their total expenditures reported since August 2000:
- Americans for a Republican Majority Non-Federal Account ($2,371,899)
- Texans for a Republican Majority ($1,549,986)
- Republican Majority Issues Committee ($1,242,788)
- Republican Majority Issues Committee – New Jersey ($121,536)
In August a Center study of all legal expense funds found that Tom DeLay had accepted the most donations to his fund from registered lobbyists of any member of Congress. Each donation is a violation of congressional rules. Following the Center’s story, organizers for the committee said that they would return all such donations.
Links to all of DeLay’s Legal Expense Funds, which the Center obtained from the House Clerk’s office, are listed below:
DeLay 1st quarter 2001