"Judge Hart's ruling provides a good faith basis for the House Ethics Committee to now investigate Tom DeLay's involvement with TRMPAC. The committee originally chose to hold off taking any action on that count of my complaint pending a decision by the Travis County grand jury. Now that a district judge has found TRMPAC's conduct to be illegal, a decision by the grand jury should not be necessary. The American people deserve to know what Tom DeLay's role was in this illegal fundraising scheme."
In addition, a state criminal investigation of the 2002 election activities of the Texans for a Republican Majority PAC, with which you were involved during the period in question, is underway. While Committee action on Count II of the complaint regarding those activities has been deferred pending further action in the state cases and investigation, the Committee will act on the underlying allegations at an appropriate time.
The Raw Story is quick on the uptake and has some further reaction from Bell:
“Obviously he was hoping the judge would rule in favor of the defendants and he would have declared it a great victory,” former Texas Rep. Chris Bell told RAW STORY Thursday. “And now I think that he has to realize that his arguments aren’t going anywhere, and the web is getting bigger and bigger.
“I think it also has to be somewhat of a wakeup call for his colleagues that have already been indicted that their arguments could very well fail,” he added. “And if they do, I think that might motivate some of them to start spilling the beans about exactly what transpired.”
Terry Scarborough of Hance Scarborough Wright Woodward & Weisbart, Ceverha's lawyer, immediately said his client would appeal the ruling to the Texas Supreme Court once Hart issues a final decision (today's decision was only a finding by the judge). "We feel strongly this decision is wrong," Scarborough said in a statement released by his office. "We will vigorously appeal this ruling immediately if Judge Hart allows us to do so."
If you're in Austin, there will be a press conference by the victorious attorney in this case at 2 PM:
WHAT: Press conference
WHO: Cris Feldman, plaintiffąs attorney
WHERE: 1005 Congress, basement conference room
DAY: Today, Thursday, May 25
TIME: 2 p.m. Texas time
Contact: Jason Stanford