Nick Lampson wants Tom DeLay's job representing Texas's 22nd Congressional District. He wants it bad. Especially since he lost his House seat as a result of The Hammer's 2004 redistricting scheme. He's been gaining serious momentum and leads the polls. DeLay's announcement this week that he's dropping out of the race and resigning from Congress in June only enhances Lampson's chances at winning. And that makes many ReTHUGlicans very, very angry. They showed that anger Thursday by disrupting a press conference Lampson held on the steps of the Sugar Land city hall. The city is DeLay's hometown.
In calling on Tom DeLay to immediately resign so a May 13th special election can be held to fill his seat, Lampson's words were drowned out by demonstrators reminiscent of the dozens of screaming, bullying GOP thugs who converged on Miami/Dade election headquarters during the 2000 recount. People were pushed, shoved and shouted at. Lampson and his supporters were surrounded by these bullies, who held up hand-written signs that read "Liberal Lampson," "I Stand with Tom DeLay" and "Go Lose Somewhere Else."
In an email sent to supporters, Lampson's campaign manager Mike Malaise said that "DeLay's goons showed up to harass, assault, and intimidate. A number of female Lampson supporters, including Marsha Rovai, a 69 year-old woman from Richmond, reported being pushed and shoved by belligerent DeLay goons at the event."
"I can't believe my Congressman, Tom DeLay, would organize this type of assault," said Ms. Rovai. "I was assaulted by two different people. One of the men hit me and another shoved his sign into my face, and then when I pushed his sign away he violently pulled my hat down over my eyes and pushed me. I'm considering filing an assault charge. This is just very upsetting and I'm so disappointed in Tom Delay for organizing this attack."
The disruption was well-orchestrated: "Let's give Lampson a parting shot that wrecks his press conference," read a mass e-mail to supporters by DeLay campaign manager Chris Homan. He promised more agressive protests. "Mr. Lampson is going to have to get used to being confronted about his voting record the next seven months."
"This incident certainly shows that Tom DeLay continues to try and intimidate the people of this district from speaking out against his unethical activity," Malaise said.
Take notice, Democrats. This is just the beginning of the type of brutish intimidation and devious acts the ReTHUGlicans will resort to in order to hold onto power. Fasten your seat belts, it's going to be a bumpy ride.