Friday, February 22, 2008


Cherchez la lobbyiste

by Larry Geller

Il y a une lobbyiste dans toute les affaires; aussitôt qu'on me fait un rapport, je dis: 'Cherchez la lobbyiste'.

There is a lobbyist in every case; as soon as they bring me a report, I say, 'Look for the lobbyist'.

(With deep, deep apologies to Alexandre Dumas (père) and other speakers of the French language, both living and dead.)

Ok, McCain may have had an affair, or maybe he didn't. What has turned up in this case is that he is surrounded by lobbyists.

But when McCain huddled with his closest advisers at his rustic Arizona cabin last weekend to map out his presidential campaign, virtually every one was part of the Washington lobbying culture he has long decried. His campaign manager, Rick Davis, co-founded a lobbying firm whose clients have included Verizon and SBC Telecommunications. His chief political adviser, Charles R. Black Jr., is chairman of one of Washington's lobbying powerhouses, BKSH and Associates, which has represented AT&T, Alcoa, JPMorgan and U.S. Airways. [Washington Post, 2/21/08]

McCain is clearly in bed with lobbyists, if not with Vicki Iseman specifically. But to catch up on what he did for her, check out tonight's Democracy Now (on Oahu, 10 pm channel 56) or Behind the John McCain Lobbying Scandal: A Look at How McCain Urged the Federal Communications Commission to Act on Behalf of Paxson Communications.

Corporate money corrupts. McCain is in focus now, but his scandal is just an illustration of the extent of the problem.

We can do something about corporate money in Hawaii. We need to stop SB2204 and HB2455 which remove Hawaii's current caps on corporate bribes campaign donations.

It's easier this session to submit testimony via email. Please do something to stop these bills. It will take people power. Stay tuned here for specific action.

There's also a rally to support passage of the Big Island Public Funding Bill, HB661 on Monday, February 25 at 10:00 am on the Capitol stairs on the mauka side. And a web page by Voter Owned Elections here.

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