Monday, February 1, 2010

I believe it is "hypocrisy"


Dem. senators spent weekend with bank, energy, tobacco lobbyists

Twelve Democratic Senators spent last weekend in Miami Beach raising money from top lobbyists for oil, drug, and other corporate interests that they often decry, according to a guest list for the event obtained by POLITICO.

The guest list for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee's "winter retreat" at the Ritz Carlton South Beach Resort doesn't include the price tag for attendance, but the maximum contribution to the committee, typical for such events, is $30,000. There, to participate in "informal conversations" and other meetings Saturday, were senators including DSCC Chairman Robert Menendez; Michigan's Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow; Bob Casey of Pennsylvania; Claire McCaskill of Missouri; freshmen Kay Hagan of North Carolina and Mark Begich of Alaska; and even left-leaning Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

Across the table was a who's who of 108 senior Washington lobbyists, including the top lobbying officials for many of the industries Democrats regularly attack: Represented were the American Bankers Association, the tobacco company Altria, the oil company Marathon, several drug manufacturers, the defense contractor Lockheed, and most of the large independent lobbying firms: Ogilvy, BGR, Quinn Gillespie, Heather Podesta, and Tony Podesta.

The retreat's guest list is a marked contrast to Menendez's recent rhetoric, which has echoed the White House denunciation of "special interests" and "fat cats."
So I guess the Democrat's plan is to talk smack about lobbyists is public and schmooze with them in private.  Once upon a time politicians could pull off that level of hypocrisy but in the Internet age nothing flies under the radar.  Of course if it were Republicans engaged in a game of under the table footsie the story would be on the cover of the NYT and Keith Olbermann would be positively spasmatic.  But it isn't Republicans so the MSM is yawning. 

I would call the Dems shameless but using "Dem" and "shameless" in the same sentence is redundant.

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