Abramoff hasn't been saying much until now. He spoke with TIME's Adam Zagorin to discuss his relationship with DeLay and the investigation into his lobbying activities. Here's a small taste of the interview. For a longer version, check out next week's TIME magazine.:
TIME: A U.S. senate investigation showed that you charged excessive amounts to certain Native American tribes and delivered little or nothing in return. Did you?
ABRAMOFF: The return on investment for these tribes, and all my clients, is far better than anything they or we could have imagined. The Native Americans I served are sophisticated business people. They are running a multi-billion dollar industry. They realize that spending millions to save billions is just good business.
TIME: In e-mail communications you describe your Native American clients in terms that could have been lifted from the Howard Stern Show. What were you thinking?
ABRAMOFF: I regret that in the heat of the locker room atmosphere of the lobbying world, I sometimes, rarelybut sometimesI resorted to language more common to a drill sergeant or a football coach. Many of my e-mails have been maliciously taken out of context, another effort by those assaulting my career. As a result, I've been portrayed as a cynical barbarian preying on the very clients I was charged to defend. To read more, check out next week's TIME magazine on newsstands Monday, May 2nd