THE PLANK OCTOBER 8, 2009
De Moraes speculates that perhaps Delay was urged to quit the show. It seems that, while the Hammer had enough fervent supporters calling in to keep him from being booted despite his less-than-gazelle-like moves, he was having a terrible effect on the show's broader viewership: Its ratings had gone into a nose-dive as Delay and his fractured tootsies emerged as the primary storyline.
I'm not suggesting anyone abandoned the show for partisan reasons. But there is a delightful parallel to be drawn between Delay's run and the popularity of toxic gasbags such as Glenn Beck, Ann Coulter, and Michelle Malkin. All enjoy a devoted core of fans who line up to buy whatever they're peddling: books, speeches, TV commentary, deeply creepy cheerleading web skits. Within the relatively narrow world of political obsessives, they are a force to be reckoned with.
The bulk of mainstream America, however, is unimpressed and inclined to quietly change the channel.