Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Dirty Lobbyists vs. Campaign donors

From the London Times: Cronyism fears as Obama donor tipped for key post
"President Obama, having campaigned on a promise to end the culture of cronyism, seems poised to appoint one of his biggest campaign fundraisers as the next American ambassador in London."

And David Brooks: The Big Test
"I fear [the Obama administration] is going to try to undertake the biggest administrative challenge in American history while refusing to hire the people who can help the most: agency veterans who are registered lobbyists." Emphasis mine.

While I applaud the efforts by President Obama to restore ethics to the White House and minimize the influence of special interest groups, this seems like a huge contradiction. Fundraisers and bundlers can get a cush appointment, but lobbyists are branded with the bright scarlet "L." Seems like a dinstinction without a difference. Who do you think ultimately has more influence over a politician? Someone who raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for your campaign? Or someone who is politically connected with an address on K Street?

No comments: