The news this morning that former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay will be a contestant on the upcoming season of “Dancing With the Stars” triggered a mixture of chortling and bemusement as it whipped through cyberspace.
“Also: Denny Hastert to be on American Idol. Right, @ryanseacrest?” ABC chief White House correspondent Jake Tapper joked on Twitter.
Even Tom Bergeron, host of “Dancing With the Stars,” admitted he was flummoxed when he heard that the one-time Republican king maker nicknamed “The Hammer” would be participating in the dance spectacle. “This is the one when the producers last week were telling me who the lineup was … I went, ‘You’re kidding!’” Bergeron said on ABC’s “Good Morning America” as he announced the cast of the new season.
DeLay, known for his hardball tactics on the Hill, stepped down from his House seat in 2006 after being indicted in Texas for violating campaign finance laws. The case is pending.
Conrad Green, the show’s executive producer, said he considered the fact that DeLay is under indictment before offering him the role but decided it was not enough to keep him off the show. “Frankly, this case seems to have stalled completely,” he said in an interview. “I believe in innocent before proven guilty.”
Actually, it’s just been going through the appeals process, some initiated by DeLay’s legal team. If you want to blame anyone for the length of time it’s taken, blame the in-no-rush Texas appeals courts. Be that as it may, I don’t even know what to say about this. I guess it’s a good thing Richard Nixon had David Frost around to do his image rehabbing.
I suppose this shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise. After all, DeLay has apparently been a fan of the show for some time now.