Giuliani, which is part of DeLay’s legal defense team. Dallas corporate raider Harold Simmons is a major source of support for DeLay’s legal defense fund. Simmons controls the holding companies Contran Corp. and Valhi, Inc., which gave $10,000 apiece toward DeLay’s defense. Simmons personally gave the legal fund another $10,000. A major GOP donor at the state and federal levels, Simmons controls a vast commercial empire that has spent $735,000 on federal lobbyists in the past five years. Simmons is best known in Texas for his controlling interest in Waste a decade and up to $5 million lobbying the state to secure permits to open nuclear waste dumps in West Texas. WCS also has spent $175,000 lobbying the federal government in recent years. This year it snagged a contract to take 3,500 truckloads of radioactive waste from a federal bomb plant in Ohio. Texas lobbyist Kent Hance recruited Simmons to invest in WCS. Hance represented the Louisiana Coushatta tribe while DeLay’s indicted lobbyist crony, Jack Abramoff, fraudulently billed the tribe some $32 million. This year Hance’s law firm Hance Scarborough Wright Ginsberg and Brusilow unsuccessfully defended TRMPAC Treasurer Bill Ceverha in a civil suit. A state judge ruled in May that Ceverha broke Texas law by failing to disclose TRMPAC’s corporate contributions to state officials. Reliant Energy, a $20,000 corporate donor to DeLay’s defense fund, spent more than $1 million lobbying the federal government in the past five years. Reliant gave $25,000 in corporate funds to TRMPAC in 2002, the same year that it threw an Abramoffattended baby shower for DeLay’s daughter, Danielle Ferro. \(In 2002 Ferro worked as a TRMPAC consultant, of Reliant’s top federal lobby firms is the Federalist Group, which employs former DeLay legislative director Drew Maloney. Maloney helped DeLay set up a 2002 golf tournament in which Reliant and other energy firms that contributed to DeLay PACs got to tee off with the then-House majority leader on the eve of a House-Senate conference on an omnibus energy bill. Last year the House ethics committee rebuked DeLay for this outing, which it said created the appearance of selling political access. Dallas-based Panda Energy has given $10,000 to DeLay’s legal defense fund; CEO Bob Carter personally chipped in another $5,000. After building power plants in Nepal and China, Panda complained that these governments failed to honor power-purchasing contracts. Despite modest lobby expenditures, Panda found traction with its Nepali complaint in Congress. Nepal News reported this year that Republican members of Congress agreed to support duty-free imports of Nepali clothingif the Nepal electric utility works out $3 million in debts to Panda. It is still too early to say if the corporate money that got Tom DeLay into serious legal trouble can bail him out of it. What is clear is thatin the twisted world of politicsDeLay’s legal troubles present special interests with yet another way to curry favor with one of the most powerful members of Congress. Andrew ‘Wheat is research director for Austin-based Texans for Public Justice. “Karen Olsson is the most incisive and engaging writer to hit the Texas literary scene in a tong time.” Larry McMurtry “Funny, intelligent,” James Wharton Jr., the Washington Post Book World “[Al fine novel.” Mark Costello, The New York Times Book Review “Super-smart.” “Nearly every page of Waterloo winks Daily fandy at Austin’s people and places.” Russet Cobb, Austin American-Statesman “Waterloo is that rare accomplishment, a provincial fiction that finds the universe in a grain of Texas silt.” Steven G. Oilman, Son Antonio current “[Olsson] leaped onto the literary scene fully formed and spun a worldly, golden novel from a parochial pile of straw,” Mike Shea, Texas Monthly www.fsgbooks.com NOVEMBER Id, Z005 I lit I LXAS Unt1 -0/tH 11
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