Jeffrey Bell, in next Monday’s issue of the WEEKLY STANDARD makes the case for Tom DeLay;

DeLay is the most important of a small but growing group of conservative leaders who are willing and able to operate without permission or praise from Blue State media. The fact that Hastert, DeLay, and their allies have maintained unbroken operational control of the House, never losing a significant floor vote in the four-plus years since Bush became president, has (to put it mildly) opened the door for other ambitious leaders to consider doing the same, either on selected issues or across the board.

If DeLay goes down because of overseas trips and/or fundraising practices that have never caused the slightest political problem for anyone else, the lesson to other Red State leaders will be clear. The four-year House winning streak, so widely taken for granted among conservatives, will not long survive DeLay. That is why Democrats and Blue State media (despite some half-hearted efforts to depict DeLay as a GOP albatross) so fervently desire his career to end as soon as possible.

Bingo. We are clearly at a divide, here. We can no longer ask the Democrats for permission to do the right thing.
As the first Preident Bush found out; Being nice to the Democrats and giving them what they want…(In Bush Sr’s case, the Democrat-demanded tax hikes) will only serve to get you a cut throat. Delay figured out that equation, and it’s why he’s as effective as he is.

Which is what makes him a target the Democrats spend so much effort on.