So Tom Delay knows how to dance? Whodathoughtit? Whodathoughtanyonewouldcare? But, boy, have the pundits and newslite shows lit up on this one. And why not? Tom Delay shaking his booty in heels is at least as entertaining in an “ain’t that bizarre way” as a little dog dancing in a red dress on youtube. (Truth be known I feel worse for the dog than Delay.)
Delay was doing more than a little tango, though. He was doing nothing short of the Republican Reputation Restoration Rumba. That’s where a Republican who has done something pretty darn not good goes public in an act of “darn, that guy is so contrite he’s willing to blow his dignity right out the window” and ends up reputationally refurbished and ready to run again.
Why it was just a scant 57 years ago this week—right as Tommy Tune Delay was learning his cha cha—that Tricke Dickie played checkers on national TV and saved his political bacon, thereby launching the modern genre of political resurrection through public humiliation. Ho apropos is that?
Delay is by no means the only Republican since Nixon to stage a redemption comeback on the political theater of the absurd’s stage. Heck, Newt Gingrich (as in lost the second most powerful position in American government after leading his party to political disaster after trying to impeach the President for lying about an affair while having an affair that would ultimately result in his second divorce) has been flaunting himself as the heir apparent of a Republican party in retreat on every AM talk and Fox news show he can be booked on. Now if he can only get himself booked on American idol the nomination will be in the bag. And let’s not forget that Sarah Palin (before giving up on being a governor so she could get lucrative speaking fees for talks to Asian businessmen) actually preemptively restored her rapidly declining political panache with one well placed appearance on SNL. If she’d only done a couple of cheers in high heels she might be in Joe Biden’s tights right now.
Indeed, there have been so many Republicans (Craig, Sanford, et. al) doing the mea culpa mambo in recent months that they could all get together with Delay and do a special edition of Dancing With the Stars: A Chorus Line.
And, yes, there are more than a few Democrats who, over the years, have had to make their own humiliating amends with the public they’d betrayed. None of them, though, have been able to dance their way back into the public’s heart like Fred “The Hammer” Astaire. So what’s a little political corruption way back when when the man can dance right here and right now?
Welcome back Tom, you tap dancing fool. All is forgiven. Now if they could only get George W. in spandex….