Monday, June 25, 2007

IS McCAIN'S STRAIGHT-TALKER BULLSHIT GOING TO BACKFIRE SO BADLY THAT HE'LL BE BRANDED THE LOBBYIST CANDIDATE OVER THE TWO ACTUAL LOBBYISTS?

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Last week it was big news that McCain had more lobbyists signed up for his campaign than any other GOP candidate. Something tells me Hillary isn't doing too badly on that front either. And far be if for me to deny that lobbyist-affiliation should be a disqualifier from serving in public office (or, for that matter, walking freely among humanity). But, come on, McCain may be the most hypocritical of any candidate in eons-- and the most likely to drop out of the race first-- but he has two rivals who are lobbyists themselves, Giuliani-- who started reaping his lobbyist bonanza on 9/12-- and 18 year vet of ultimate sleaze, Fred Thompson.

Mark Silva in the Chicago Tribune and Thomas Edsall in Huffington Post claim McCain has more lobbyists than even Hillary. Edsall says "all the campaigns pale in comparison to McCain's, whose rhetoric stands in sharp contrast to his conduct."
"Too often the special interest lobbyists with the fattest wallets and best access carry the day when issues of public policy are being decided," McCain asserts on his web site, declaring that he "has fought the 'revolving door' by which lawmakers and other influential officials leave their posts and become lobbyists for the special interests they have aided."

In actual practice, at least two of McCain's top advisers fit precisely the class of former elected officials he criticizes so sharply. On March 7, 2007, McCain named ex-Texas Representative Tom Loeffler, who has one of the most lucrative and influential practices in the nation's capital, as his campaign co-chair. In the same month, McCain named former Washington Sen. Slade Gorton, now a heavyweight lobbyist, as his honorary chairman for Washington state.

Loeffler's client list includes PhRMA, the drug industry association; Southwest Airlines; Toyota; and Martin Marietta. Gorton represents, among others, Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp., Weyerhaeuser and Fidelity National Financial.

In addition, David Crane, now the campaign's senior policy advisor, was a senior executive at The Washington Group, a firm with 2006 billings of $10.4 million and 52 clients, including Delta Airlines, the Association of American Railroads, and the governments of Panama and Bangladesh. And Charlie Black, who is now a campaign spokesman appearing on McCain's behalf on radio, television, and as a "spin-doctor" after debates, is chairman of BKSH & Associates, with lobbying billings of $7.6 million in 2006, representing J.P. Morgan, Occidental and General Motors.

All told, there are 11 current or former lobbyists working for or advising McCain, at least double the number in any other campaign.

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1 Comments:

At 6:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

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