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The Hammer goes to the slammer


Judge Pat Priest sentenced Tom DeLay to three years in prison.

The three-year sentence was on the charge of conspiring to launder corporate money into political donations during the 2002 elections.

On the charge of money laundering, DeLay was sentenced to five years but that was probated for 10 years.

He was taken into custody but he was expected to be released as soon as he posted an appeals bond.

The judge then ordered the courtroom cleared except for the lawyers.

Prior to the sentence, DeLay spoke to the court.

He was unrepentant.

“I fought the fight. I ran the race. I kept the faith,” DeLay said.

Judge Priest said he agreed with the jury’s guilty verdict, returned in November, and would have instructed a different verdict if he did not believe DeLay conspired to break the law.

He said there is no higher principle than those who write the laws should follow the law.

Gotta admit, I didn’t expect DeLay to get jail time – I figure it’d be probation all the way. But then I didn’t really expect him to get convicted, either. I think I need to start not expecting to win the Lottery.

There’s a lot more at that link about how the day in court went. DeLay is still a long way from actually seeing the inside of a jail cell, of course. He’s free to walk among us during the appeals process, which may take as long as it took to get him to trial in the first place, and I can’t say I really expect his convictions to be held up by all of the courts that may get a chance to rule on them. But for today at least, we can all revel in the fact that Convicted Felon Tom DeLay is officially a jailbird. Sometimes, karma really comes through. And if you’re looking for a way to celebrate this monumental event, I recommend a slice of Schadenfreude Pie, with a hat tip to Linkmeister for the reference.

UPDATE: Juanita checks in.

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  1. byron schirmbeck says:

    Ok, my 80’s days are catching up to me, everytime I read “judge priest” my brain reads judas priest! Gotta say, Delay always gave me the creeps when I saw him.

  2. Linkmeister says:

    Brad DeLong knows St. Paul better than I do and caught this. What DeLay said was a nearly direct quotation of Paul writing to his student in the First Epistle to Timothy:

    “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”

    Funny. I have never thought of DeLay as a reincarnation of one of the principal Saints in the New Testament; rather the opposite.

    One of these days I’m gonna make that pie; Scalzi makes it sound good, and then the pictures!

  3. blank says:

    The Hammer goes to the slammer

    Excellent! Though I think my favorite is: Dancing Behind Bars!

  4. Eric Dick says:

    What a waste of tax payer money – which I will also reiterate to many decisions made by harris county criminal judges. This case should have pled out to a misdemeanor and Delay be on probation. Tell me who it helps for Delay to be in jail. Please.

  5. Except there was no chance that DeLay would have ever taken a plea. He’ll never admit he did anything illegal or wrong. I don’t necessarily disagree with what you’re saying, but the only way there wasn’t going to be a trial was if the indictments got tossed by an appeals court.

  6. […] Just Can’t Believe It, writes Charles Kuffner at Off the Kuff: “Gotta admit, I didn’t expect DeLay to get jail time–I figure […]