|"By the time we finish this poker game, there may not be a federal
government left! Which would suit me just fine."
-Tom DeLay, 1994
In a stunning 1994 interview, shortly after the now infamous Republican revolution, Tom DeLay sat down and laid out his vision for America: to destroy the Department of Education, HUD, OSHA, the NEH, the NEA, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy. His self-stated goal was to "completely redesign government."
The Big Buy: Tom DeLay's Stolen Congress is the story of how he did just that. It's the story of one of the most blatant power grabs in American history, and how a District Attorney in Texas turned out to be the biggest threat to the national DeLay Machine. The film is a warning about how easy it is for American democracy to be hijacked by a combination of relentless ambition and corporate millions. It makes the case that DeLay built a "custom-made Congress" that is still providing votes for his agenda.
DeLay's utter contempt for government made him a favorite of corporations. Over the next decade, they funded DeLay's rise to power with millions while wining, dining, and bank rolling an extravagant lifestyle complete with corporate jets, expensive restaurants and stays at plush golf resorts.
But Travis county D.A. Ronnie Earle is on his heels, and DeLay's made a mistake. He blatantly funneled banned corporate money to candidates in the 2002 Texas elections. This was the critical first phase of a take-no-prisoners plan to ensure a more hard-Right Republican U.S. Congress. DeLay's actions led to controversial redistricting in Texas that disenfranchised voters, set-off the largest upheaval in modern Texas political history and sent five new hard-Right Republican congressmen to Washington.
Texas grand juries have brought 41 indictments against eight corporations, DeLay's political action committee, a business lobby ally, three underlings and Tom Delay himself. But while Delay has given up his leadership post, his Texas takeover is still impacting all Americans daily. His Texas redistricting changed the face of the last Congress. The Central American Free Trade Agreement, the Energy Bill, Budgets and Budget Cuts that hurt college students, single parents and the working poor -- all passed in the last 14 months by less than the five votes DeLay won from his scheme in Texas. From now until the November elections- The Big Buy is destined to serve as a rallying cry for those who want to change "the house that Tom built" back into "the people's house."
The Big Buy is a feature length documentary that connects the dots between big money and big government. It's not a pretty picture.