Impact Player of the Year: The Earle of Democracy
By Mark Donald
Monday, December 20, 2004
At 62, veteran Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle has been called a partisan "crackpot," "a runaway prosecutor," "a persecutor who silences his critics to accomplish his own political purposes" � and that's just in the past few weeks.
But Democrat Earle, who is just as likely to quote W.B. Yeats and Albert Einstein as he is Bob Bullock, seems remarkably unscathed by the fevered pitch of these attacks. He half-expected these and more after his two-year investigation into alleged violations of Texas campaign finance laws led to 32 indictments spread among three political associates of U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, R-Sugar Land, and eight corporations.
"There is a basic rule that the Mafia follows," Earle says. "And it is used as a template by most politicians that I have investigated: Deny the allegation and attack the allegator."
Never underestimate an "allegator"!
As a former Lubbockite migrated to Mr. Earle's town, maybe I can interpret. Maybe it is an obscure reference to the Flatlander's song "You gotta pay the alligator".
Admittedly, I have no idea what they are saying either.
I haven't followed enough of this little drama to know enough about the allegations to have an opinion, but it does appear that Mr. Earle is at least fearless. That alone might be admirable. Although, I don't really approve of his 'mob tactics' schtick.
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