campaign contributions

Sigh No More, Lobbyists

Gosh. It's hard being a lobbyist these days. No more expensing steak dinners for Senators, dropping boxes of Godiva off for staffers, or putting half the House Finance Committee on a Gulfstream bound for a Aruba and a dubious "fact-finding mission." Some candidates are even wary of taking their money. How can they work under these conditions?! Perhaps they can dry their tears of privation on the sharp green edges of the 2.9 billion dollars they made this year.

An Investment of Sorts

Can you take campaign contributions from Wall Street firms with one hand, and slap new regulations on them with the other asks the Baltimore Sun? As the tide of campaign money from brokerages and investment firms shifts towards the Democratic candidates for President how might the economic philosophies of each candidate be effected?

Filling the Hours, Coffers

President Bush found time to meet with some run-of-the-mill constituents in between fundraising events this week according to the Los Angeles Times and this article marveling at the President's enduring fundraising prowess.

Despite persistently low approval ratings that prevent him from advancing any significant policy initiatives, Bush has managed to fill his remaining hours in office with bunches of campaign contribution collections nights for other Republicans:

Power to...the Special Interests?

Public Campaign Action Fund has released the following online advertisement regarding the disaster of electric utility deregulation in Maryland and its correlation with campaign contributions to elected officials in the state.

Tapped Cash

A plaintiff in one of the lawsuits filed against telecommunications companies for their role in the tapping customers' phone lines without a warrant notes the campaign contributions that back up congressional decisions to side with the telecom companies over consumers.

Porky Politics

March 1st may be the first hint that spring is soon upon us, with barbecue and bikini season soon to follow, but for Congress 'tis the season to raise big money -- coincidentally right about the time earmark requests come due. Roll Call asks around about connections, real or implied, between late-night fundraisers and daytime spending decisions (sub. req. to read whole article).

Catch Up, Senate

The Senate has some 'splaining to do for lagging behind their counterparts in the House on two important ethics bills. The New York Times chides them for dragging their heels. While the House has voted in favor of banning the use of campaign contributions to pay spouses of House candidates, and files campaign finance disclosure reports electronically the Senate has approved neither of these simple, sensible reforms.

Lumps of Coal

When it comes to lobbying on behalf of your cause you can present a reasoned argument backed up by data, you can build a coalition of supporters over time to pursue legislation in the public interest, or you can rally a bunch of corporations to spend a huge amount of money to buy a little love from Congress. Guess which tactic coal companies are going with?

Quid Pro Faux Pas

Support for spying just doesn't pay like it used to. Paul Kiel at TPM Muckraker notes that for all that several Republican members of Congress have done to protect telecommunications companies from paying the price for their role in the warrantless wiretapping brouhaha the telecoms aren't giving enough money to their campaigns. Outrageous! Don't they know how Washington works?

Have a Cow

The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that livestock farming generates two-thirds of the ammonia emissions in the nation, but they're considering dropping a rule requiring these farms to report their toxic gas emissions thanks to pressure from lobbyists for factory farms, and lawmakers who know they'll be asking those same farms for campaign contributions this year.