Res­i­dency is­sue

The Washington Times Weekly - - Letters To The Editor -

Much­has­been­made­about­the­con­tro­versy over for­merRep.TomDeLayand­whetherhe can­with­drawfrom the race for his House seat and­whether the Repub­li­cans can re­place his name on the bal­lot (“GOP plans write-in for De­Lay seat,” Aug. 14 edi­tion).

Texas law stip­u­lates that non­res­i­dents can­not run, so the Demo­cratic court case has held that be­cause Mr. De­Lay still main­tains a home in Texas, there is no way to prove he will not re­turn and once again be­come a valid can­di­date, so his name can­not be re­moved from the bal­lot.

Has any­one thought to re­verse this ar­gu­ment? Can some­one move into a dis­trict just to run there? What if that per­son still main­tains a res­i­dence out­side the dis­trict?

Alan Keyes rented an apart­ment in Illi­nois so he could chal­lenge Barack Obama for the Se­nate, but per­haps the most fa­mous re­cent ex­am­ple was Sen. Hil­lary Rod­ham Clin­ton’s move to Chap­paqua, N.Y., to run for her Se­nate seat. I re­mem­ber much be­ing made of her re­verse-car­pet­bag­ger sta­tus and po­lit­i­cal op­por­tunism, but I do not re­mem­ber a le­gal chal­lenge to her res­i­dency.

Much also was made of the fact that the Clin­tons did not own a home, as they had moved­fromtheArkansas gov­er­nor’s man­sion to the White House, but this was used mainly as an ex­cuse for why they al­ways va­ca­tioned with the smart set on Martha’s Vine­yard.

It would be easy to check fi­nan­cial dis­clo­sure forms for state tax pay­ments, but I doubt they were made to high-tax New York be­fore the move to Chap­paqua.

If some­one can defini­tively es­tab­lish res­i­dency by mov­ing into a dis­trict to run for of­fice, why couldn’t some­one ter­mi­nate his el­i­gi­bil­ity by mov­ing out? Does Mr. De­Lay have to make a to­ken run at the safe Demo­cratic seat of Rep. Jim Mo­ran, Vir­ginia Demo­crat, to es­tab­lish his new domi­cile?

The Democrats run a risk if they are con­stantly seek­ing to get through the courts what they can­not win at the bal­lot box. Even some of the peo­ple who think Al Gore was de­nied his right­ful re­count­bytheSupre­meCourt will get a bad taste in their mouth from at­tempts to block bal­lot sub­sti­tu­tions for Mr. De­Lay, and Rep. Bob Ney, Ohio Repub­li­can, as well. Amer­i­cans want to see a fair fight, even if it is be­tween un­evenly matched teams. Peter Locke Ashburn, Vir­ginia

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