LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay will be among the cast of 16 celebrities in this season’s “Dancing with the Stars” reality television show, the network behind the program said on Monday.
DeLay, a Republican who earned the nickname “The Hammer” for keeping lawmakers in line, served as House Majority Leader from 2003 to 2005.
He is not the first former politician cast in the show, as TV personality and former mayor of Cincinnati Jerry Springer appeared on a past season of “Dancing.”
The other celebrities joining “Dancing” this season include singer Donny Osmond, supermodel Kathy Ireland, football star Michael Irvin, singer Macy Gray and reality TV star Kelly Osbourne, the daughter of heavy metal icon Ozzy Osbourne.
DeLay resigned from Congress in 2006 after he was charged in his native Texas with trying to violate campaign-finance laws, but the case has not been brought to trial.
He now runs a political consulting firm.
ABC network’s “Dancing with the Stars,” a program in which celebrities are paired with professional dancers to compete in the ballroom, is the second most watched U.S. TV show after “American Idol” on Fox.
The show’s ninth season with the new celebrity cast begins on September 21. Olympic gold medal gymnast Shawn Johnson was crowned the show’s champion during its most recent season.
Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis: Editing by Bob Tourtellotte