Interviewing DeLay, Cavuto "can't believe" he's leaving office, but didn't ask why

››› ››› BEN ARMBRUSTER

Fox News host Neil Cavuto interviewed Rep. Tom DeLay (R-TX) only two days after DeLay announced his intention to resign his congressional seat. But during the entire interview, Cavuto asked DeLay nothing about why he abandoned his re-election bid after winning a contentious primary or why he decided to leave office altogether, even though Cavuto claimed he "can't believe" that he had done so. Neither did Cavuto once mention DeLay's alleged ties to Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff or the guilty pleas of two of his former top aides, Michael Scanlon and Tony C. Rudy, for conspiring with Abramoff.

On the April 5 edition of Fox News' Your World, host Neil Cavuto interviewed Rep. Tom DeLay (R-TX), only two days after DeLay announced his intention to resign his seat as representative of Texas' 22nd Congressional District. But during the entire interview, Cavuto asked DeLay nothing about why he abandoned his re-election bid after winning a contentious primary or why he decided to leave office altogether, even though Cavuto claimed he was "surprised" that he had done so. Neither did Cavuto once mention DeLay's alleged ties to Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff or the guilty pleas of two of his former top aides, Michael Scanlon and Tony C. Rudy, for conspiring with Abramoff. Instead, Cavuto asked DeLay to discuss issues such as Rep. Cynthia McKinney's (D-GA) recent controversial run-in with Capitol Hill police, and whether DeLay's next job might be at the White House. The rest of the interview focused on the future of the Republican agenda and immigration issues.

In an April 4 address to his constituents, DeLay announced that he will resign from Congress and will not seek re-election. In an interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, DeLay claimed that his re-election campaign "was going to be a referendum on me and not the values and priorities of my constituents. It's going to be nasty. Millions of dollars would be spent by the Democrats to take this seat." But DeLay's decision follows his September 2005 indictment on conspiracy charges, guilty pleas by his former top aides on conspiracy charges, and recent polling showing that his re-election campaign would face significant obstacles. As The Washington Post noted, Rudy, Delay's former deputy chief of staff, told "federal prosecutors of a criminal enterprise being run out of DeLay's leadership offices," and Rudy's guilty plea placed "the influence-buying efforts of disgraced Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff directly in DeLay's operation."

From the April 5 edition of Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto:

CAVUTO: Welcome back, everyone. In 1998, a gunman got past security at the U.S. Capitol, just behind me, and killed two officers, including one that was attached to Tom DeLay's security detail. Now, last week, Georgia Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney claims that racial profiling was why a Capitol Hill police officer stopped her for identification. The congresswoman is accused of striking that officer. And now authorities are looking at striking back at her. My next guest says that Ms. McKinney is the real racist here. Joining me now is outgoing Congressman Tom DeLay of Texas. Congressman, good to have you.

DELAY: Thank you, Neil. Great to be with you.

CAVUTO: What do you think of this?

DELAY: Well, obviously, I -- I have the utmost respect for the Capitol Hill police. People think they're tour guides. These are people that are protecting that beautiful building and all the precious people in it. And, as you said, John Gibson died in my office protecting my -- my employees and me. I was in the office at the time. And he did it in -- in an incredibly courageous way. He let the shooter go by him, and he yelled at him, because he knew, if he shot him in the back, it -- he could shoot those young people sitting at their desks.

CAVUTO: Yes. And he died.

DELAY: And, so, he took the full brunt.

CAVUTO: Right.

DELAY: These -- this officer in this incident didn't know Cynthia McKinney didn't have a gun, didn't know that she had -- may have had a knife or even a bomb on her.

CAVUTO: So, you are not buying the whole racist thing?

DELAY: He still -- he still accosted her. He still showed the courage to walk up and confront her, because she had broken the protocol. It -- it had nothing to do with race. It had everything to do with doing his job, and doing it personally -- professionally.

CAVUTO: So, he shouldn't be punished in any way?

DELAY: Absolutely not. He should be -- in fact, we ought to pass a resolution commending him for his service and his courage.

CAVUTO: There is so much I want to get --

DELAY: And I am sending a letter to the chief of the Capitol Police this evening to do just that.

CAVUTO: I -- I had heard about that.

[...]

CAVUTO: All right. Hang on there, congressman.

We want to have more with Congressman Tom DeLay, who will be leaving his political job. But we will find out what -- what new job -- maybe that house -- after this.

[...]

CAVUTO: All right, back with us, the -- the man who is leaving Washington -- I can't believe it -- Tom DeLay.

We did have--

DELAY: Well, I'm leaving that building.

CAVUTO: You are leaving that building. But you are staying -- you are going to be a Virginia resident, right?

DELAY: I have to move here, yes.

CAVUTO: All right, so that they can put a Republican on -- on the ticket in -- in Texas.

DELAY: That's correct.

Posted In
Government, Ethics
Network/Outlet
Fox News Channel
Person
Neil Cavuto
Show/Publication
Your World w/ Neil Cavuto
Stories/Interests
Tom DeLay Scandal
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