I apologize for my long absence from the blog. I was out of the office for much of December — first on a reporting trip and then visiting family and friends up north, where I rediscovered the true meaning of winter. Starting today, I’m awakening the blog from its holiday-vacation-induced slumber and will be posting daily again.
While I was away, a lot went down. The Democrats managed to pass a health care bill for better or worse (more on that in future posts); state reps. Frank Corte and David Swinford announced their retirements; Austin deli-owner Marc Katz decided that selling over-priced pastrami is excellent preparation to be Lt. Gov. of Texas (add your own sausage-making joke here); Karl Rove got divorced; and Texas Tech coach Mike Leach locked some poor kid in a closet.
But my favorite holiday news story concerned Pete Sessions, the ever-entertaining Republican congressman from Dallas. Sessions, it seems, had a tight relationship with the disgraced financier Allen Stanford. So close in fact that on Feb. 17 — the day the feds charged Stanford with running a $7 billion ponzi scheme — Sessions sent Stanford the following email:
I love you and believe in you. If you want my ear/voice — e-mail.”
The Miami Herald reported these details on Dec. 27. It’s a must-read story. The Sessions email surfaced as part of an ongoing federal investigation into links between Stanford and members of Congress, according to the Herald.
Sessions has been down this road before. His ability to survive minor scandal once earned him the nickname “Teflon Pete” among his colleagues. Then there was that bizarre 2007 fund-raiser at an “adult” club in Las Vegas.
But professing love for Stanford may be one transgression that Pete Sessions will never live down.