Republicans have swept back into power in the House amid promises of a new kind of party. But how different is it, really?
If a handful of new hires made by the new House leadership — staffers who worked for former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay in the heady days of his hammer-fisted reign — is any indication, not much.
None of the former DeLay hands rehired by Boehner’s leadership office were implicated in his ethics troubles or recent conviction on money-laundering charges. But it’s an interesting look at the revolving door of legislative staffers from one Republican leadership stint to the next.
The new majority whip-designate, Rep. Kevin McCarthy, scored DeLay’s former chief of staff, Tim Berry. Berry, who worked as the Hammer’s top aide from 2002 to 2005, has been working as a lobbyist for Time Warner Cable and will return as McCarthy’s chief of staff.
Berry hasn’t been implicated in any of DeLay’s convicted or alleged wrongdoings. He did, though, have something of a relationship with Jack Abramoff. Abramoff took Berry and other DeLay aides on a SuperBowl trip in which included a night of gambling on a casino cruise ship, and once gave him a golf club.
Speaker-Designate John Boehner, announcing the staff for his new, fancier office, noted two former DeLay staffers.
Danielle Maurer was a senior floor assistant for DeLay, then lobbied for financial services firm TIAA-CREF. She’ll serve as the new speaker’s director of member services. She’s worked for Boehner since 2008.
Anne Thorsen, who worked the floor for DeLay, has been Boehner’s deputy director of floor services since 2006. She’s getting promoted to director of floor services this Congress.
[H/T Washington Monthly]