"Everybody likes beaver"

Tom DeLay, celebrity auctioneer.

Published June 29, 2006 4:04PM (EDT)

George W. Bush traveled to Missouri this week to raise money for Sen. Jim Talent by accusing some Democrats of waving "the white flag of surrender" on Iraq. Tom DeLay stayed home to raise money for a pro-hunting group by making a series of "beaver" jokes.

Roll Call has the story, and Raw Story has the excerpts. Serving as a celebrity auctioneer for the Safari Club, DeLay pitched a sheared beaver pelt vest by asking, "Who wants a beaver?" Then he declared: "Everybody likes beaver, even women." On a roll, DeLay then said -- depending on whom you ask -- that "the best thing" about the vest is that it's either "a sheared beaver" or "a shaved beaver."

Looking out at North Carolina Sen. Richard Burr, DeLay said, "Sen. Burr, they dont have beaver like this down in North Carolina."

DeLay's daughter said her father was simply selling the item that needed to be sold. He "could have made a joke about a shaved zebra, but thats not what the item was," she said. "It was what it was."

By Tim Grieve

Tim Grieve is a senior writer and the author of Salon's War Room blog.

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