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Texas: fifth judge for DeLay

The Dallas Morning News reports: A retired Democratic judge was selected Thursday to preside over U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay's money-laundering trial, but only after a game of musical benches that led all the way to Texas' top jurist and raised questions about how elected judges can preside over politically charged cases.

San Antonio criminal District Judge Pat Priest, who hears cases only by special assignment, will take over the DeLay case at the request of Texas Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson. But Jefferson's involvement was questioned, too, based on close political association with people involved in the DeLay case.

When the dust had settled from whirlwind court filings and motions that had little to do with the substance of the charges against the former House majority leader, Priest became the fifth judge to touch the case in two weeks. -- KRT Wire | 11/03/2005 | After numerous changes, retired Democratic judge gets DeLay case

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