With a big tip of the hat to Kathryn Jean Lopez, have a look at the following excerpt from a story in today's Washington Post about our district attorney Ronnie Earle and one of the great icons from late 20th Century Texas, Bob Bullock:
AUSTIN -- Ronnie Earle, the Texas prosecutor vilified by Rep. Tom DeLay as a "rogue district attorney" and an "unabashed partisan zealot," has heard worse.Heh, heh.
There was the time, for instance, that a prominent Texas Democrat vowed to murder him.
"He would hold all these press conferences and say terrible things about me," Earle said, referring to Bob Bullock, the future lieutenant governor whom Earle investigated for allegedly misusing government resources in the 1970s.
"I know at least twice people took guns away from him when he said he was going to kill me."
Earle, a Democrat, was laughing as he recounted the story in the Travis County district attorney's office last week. And like many sagas in Earle's career, the Bullock episode comes with a footnote.
Earle couldn't persuade the grand jury to indict Bullock, who was then the state's comptroller and struggling with a drinking problem. But years later, once Bullock had sobered up, the two men were recounting old times at Bullock's kitchen table.
"You know years ago when you investigated me?" Earle recalled Bullock telling him. "I was guilty as hell."
As even DeLay himself has had to explain recently, it doesn't tell you much about Earle's supposed non-partisanship that he's gone after more Democrats than Republicans in a state like Texas. The GOP didn't have much of a presence in this state's government until just this past generation. Thus, it's no surprise that Earle's pursuit of Democrats is more a matter of internecine politics intended to benefit ideological allies than it is a true indication of his [impartiality].