From this morning’s New York Times…
WASHINGTON, April 3 — Representative Tom DeLay, the relentless Texan who helped lead House Republicans to power but became ensnared in a corruption scandal, has decided to leave Congress, House officials said Monday night.
Mr. DeLay, who abandoned his efforts to hold onto his position as majority leader earlier this year after the indictment of the lobbyist Jack Abramoff, a former ally, was seeking re-election as vindication. But he told selected colleagues that, facing the possibility of defeat, he had decided not to try to hold on to his House seat.
“He just decided that the numbers and the whole political climate were against him and that it was time to step aside,” said one Congressional official with knowledge of Mr. DeLay’s plans. The official did not want to be identified because Mr. DeLay’s formal announcement was scheduled for Tuesday in Houston.
On Monday night, Richard Cullen, DeLay’s defense lawyer, said that his client had been pondering a withdrawal from the race for some time and that “it had nothing to do with any criminal investigation.”
“The decision had absolutely nothing to do with the investigation,” Mr. Cullen said.