I know Mike Allen, the author of today’s Time interview/article with DeLay. So I’m sure this was no more than an error made under tight deadline pressure. But, still, it’s important to set the record straight.
Mike writes …
DeLay was forced to vacate his post as majority leader because of a House Republican rule (known as “the DeLay rule,” because it was enacted amid concern about his legal situation) that requires a leader under indictment to step down.
This stands what happened on its head.
The “DeLay Rule” was the new caucus rule House Republicans passed in November 2004 to allow DeLay to remain Majority Leader even after he was indicted. In other words, the existing rule mandated that any member of the leadership had to step down if indicted. DeLay was the first guy who the rule was actually going to hit. So he had the caucus change the rule for him.
Eventually, they were forced to overturn their own rule change because of an overwhelming public backlash against their cravenness and lack of principle.