Smoke

From Holden:

Dick De Guerin, Tom DeLay’s lawyer, is an expert at blowing smoke. Now he’s making a big deal out of a plea offer that was presented in a meeting he did not attend, and those who did witness the offer say he’s full of it.

U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay’s lawyer, Dick DeGuerin, lit a fuse Monday by claiming that prosecutors threatened to have DeLay indicted unless he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor.

The only problem is that DeGuerin was not part of those negotiations, and more than one source who was party to the discussions tells a different story.

[snip]

The story the meeting that emerges about the meeting is one of both sides trying to preserve DeLay’s leadership post but both sides sticking to their views on the law banning corporate donations in connection with campaigns.

[snip]

The negotiations, according to the sources, were stuck between two extremes. Prosecutors wanted DeLay to plead guilty to a misdemeanor, admitting that he broke state election laws, without giving up his leadership position. DeLay, who never believed he violated state law, wanted prosecutors to postpone their case against him until the Texas appellate courts ruled on whether the state ban was constitutional or not.

According to sources familiar with the negotiations, DeLay was willing to give prosecutors more time to pursue their case if that also meant giving higher courts more time to consider whether the ban was constitutional. If the court decided it was constitutional, DeLay would consider pleading guilty to a misdemeanor.