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Tom Delay

Tom Delay mugshot

The arrest of Tom Delay:

He climbed to one of the major power slots in Congress, only to have it all come crashing down in scandal.

Thomas Dale Delay was born in Laredo, Texas but spent much of his childhood in Venezuela, where his father worked in the energy industry. He attended Baylor University and was studying to be a doctor when he was expelled after two years for drinking and painting Baylor's school colors on a building at rival Texas Tech University.

Delay graduated the University of Houston with a biology degree in 1970.

He broke into politics as a member of the Texas legislature, where his nickname was "Hot Tub Tom", because of his reputation as a playboy. He also struggled with alcoholism.

On to Congress, he rose through the ranks to become Deputy Republican Whip in 1988 and rose to the role as Party Whip, where he became known as a strong conservative on issues like gun rights, business and pro-life.

Tom Delay

Liberal groups gave him low marks on issues like civil liberties, union affairs and environmental protection.

In 2005, by now the House majority leader…

Tom Delay mugshot

…Delay was indicted in Austin on charges of conspiring to violate election law. He temporarily resigned his leadership post and was then pressured to leave the position entirely.

Tom Delay

Delay was convicted in January 2001 and sentenced to three years in prison but remained free on bail pending an appeal. Delay's conviction was overturned in September 2013 and he was formally acquitted.

Delay also came under scrutiny in the Jack Abramoff investigation, but was not swept into it.

The former House Majority Leader also was in the spotlight when he appeared as a participant in the ninth season of ABC TV's "Dancing with the Stars.

And he stirred some controversy when, in promoting that show, he made comments on MSNBC questioning whether Barack Obama was qualified to be President because of questions about where he was born.

Delay launched a personal blog in December 2006 and in 2008 rebranded it "Dancing with Delay", removing much of its political content.

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