Veteran journalist and White House Writers Group’s Brett Decker and former House Maj. Leader Tom DeLay have co-written an op-ed for USA Today on America’s debt crisis and the shutdown. Decker is the former editorial page editor for TWT. DeLay, a former exterminator, served in the House for 22 years.
Here’s how it came about. David Mastio, Decker’s former deputy at TWT who is now Forum Editor at USA Today, suggested the piece. So Decker called DeLay, who said OK.
So how was it working with DeLay? Was he a pain in the ass? “It was great writing with Tom again after 13 years,” Decker told FishbowlDC. “I was his speechwriter in the whip office in 1999-2000 and we used to go back and forth on copy all the time. DeLay has such an encyclopedic knowledge of politics and intuitive sense for legislative strategy. I learn something new every time I talk to him.”
As journalists know, some people can be difficult writing partners. Decker said, “Tom DeLay can analyze situations in such depth that he’s super easy to write with,” he said. “There’s always more usable content than space — a good problem to have. And he’s a nice, kind person, which makes working with him enjoyable.”