Washington Post TV critic Lisa DeMoraes showed great affection for ABC late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel for bringing a partisan slap or two to the customary interview for contestants voted off Dancing with the Stars. Kimmel snidely asked former House majority leader Tom DeLay about being indicted:
He was brought out onstage in a wheelbarrow, wearing orthopedic booties.
"Do you think this will inspire other indicted politicians to dance?" Kimmel asked him.
"It keeps you out of jail -- that's for sure," responded DeLay, a smile frozen on his face....
"But if, God forbid, you wind up in jail, it's not going to be a good thing for the inmates to see on reruns," Kimmel continued.
We think this may have been Kimmel's best interview.
The delight of de Moraes passed through several Post editors, who must have agreed with the opinion, and also giggled at the vision of DeLay warding off prison liaisons (even if Dancing with the Stars doesn't go to reruns). Liberal journalists usually believe in innocence until proven guilty (and sometimes innocence after conviction), but apparently not when Democratic county prosecutors (like this one, Travis County prosecutor Ronnie Earle) can end the career of a national Republican. This is how de Moraes explained the DeLay case:
(In case you've forgotten, DeLay had a relationship with lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who pleaded guilty to fraud, tax evasion and conspiracy to bribe public officials, in a deal that required Abramoff to cooperate in an investigation into his dealings with members of Congress. After stepping down as House majority leader, the Texas Republican gave up his reelection bid in 2006. He is under indictment in his home state on charges stemming from a campaign finance investigation. He has pleaded not guilty and the case has been mired in procedural challenges.)
DeLay was never charged in the Abramoff scandal, but the Post wanted to make sure that connection was re-established. AP offered a recent update on Earle’s shrinking case on campaign financing in Texas.