In the fall of 2005 dominos were falling fast in the Jack Abramoff investigation. And they were falling in one very clear direction, closer and closer to Tom DeLay.
In January 2006 Buckham shut down his business. In June 2006 the Washington Post revealed this choice nugget:
A registered lobbyist opened a retirement account in the late 1990s for the wife of then-House Whip Tom DeLay (R-Tex.) and contributed thousands of dollars to it while also paying her a salary to work for him from her home in Texas, according to sources, documents and DeLay's attorney, Richard Cullen.
The account represents a small portion of the income that DeLay's family received from entities at least partly controlled by lobbyist Edwin A. Buckham. But the disclosure of its origin adds to what was previously known about the benefits DeLay's family received from its association with Buckham, and it brings the total over the past seven years to about half a million dollars.
Since then.....nothing. No Buckham plea. No indictments. Nothing.....was a U.S. Attorney fired to prevent the investigation from continuing to inexorably close in on Tom DeLay?
Nope. But something very fishy did indeed take place. The lead investigator was given a Federal Judgeship, a new division chief with connections to the GOP machine was appointed (AND REPORTEDLY, TO THE DELAY DEFENSE TEAM ITSELF) and presto...no more momentum in the investigation.