Posts tagged influence
Posts tagged influence
What could go wrong?
It’s taken for granted that lobbyists influence legislation. But perhaps less obvious is that they often write the actual bills — even word for word.
"The financial industry has long been a draw for former political operatives seeking a bigger paycheck and New York lifestyle. But with the big banks now under constant assault from reformers, regulators and some members of Congress, the flow of top talent from Washington to Wall Street has become a small flood."
Great editorial in the Winston-Salem Journal of North Carolina on one state lawmaker’s desire to repeal the ban on gifts from lobbyists. It ends:
"Brawley defended his bill to WRAL-TV, saying legislators have integrity and would not be unduly influenced by gifts.
"We find that hilarious, and suspect the prosecutors who put [Former Speaker] Black in prison do also. HB 640 should die a quick death. Our legislature should not be up for sale to those who can afford to wine and dine our legislators."
"The high court last week decided to hear a challenge to the aggregate limit on how much a donor can contribute each election cycle. Many court observers expect the justices to abolish the cap and free individuals to donate to as many candidates as they wish.
"That would be a groan-inducing development on K Street, where lobbyists are already bombarded with requests to attend fundraisers and contribute to campaigns."
"The way lobbyists woo the incoming freshman class of lawmakers is a lot like dating. They’re seeking out people with common interests. They’re hoping to cultivate a long-term relationship. And they’re looking for that know-it-when-you-see-it spark.
"And this week — with members-elect in town for orientation — offers plenty of opportunities for flirting. Receptions, meet-and-greets and even fundraisers are being squeezed between official business."
Members of Congress are widely regarded as the nation’s shakers and movers. But behind them, unseen, are a powerful force of lobbyists shaping everything from the national dialogue to the actual laws Americans will have to follow. Sharyl Attkisson gives us a rare and exclusive peek behind the sometimes shadowy lobbyists’ curtain in Washington, D.C.: