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Why Lobbying Is Now Increasingly In The Shadows

US Politics & Gov't  (tags: lobbing, politics, agendas, government, ethics, usa, congress, politics )

- 1812 days ago -
The lobbying industry is becoming more secretive -- reversing a trend that dates back to the 1990s. And campaign money now looms ever larger as a critical element in the persuasion business.

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Kit B (276)
Friday May 3, 2013, 5:20 am

So Obama is the cause of lobbies moving farther into the shadows? Seems to me if that is the reason, he needs to show even more contempt of these lobbies.

Past Member (0)
Friday May 3, 2013, 5:48 am
The first thing I thought of Kit was Obama. We are talking about the president, or "I'm not, I'm not (don't look too closely) as I am President Obama."

Gene J (290)
Friday May 3, 2013, 6:51 am
""It's largely a matter of choice that each of us makes, as to whether we comply with the law or not," says Tony Podesta, one of Washington's top lobbyists. He says whether you have to register depends on how much lobbying you do for each client."

IOh, sure, that's the reason. What a load. The reason they are in the shadows is partly Citizen's United and partly because their employers do NOT want the public to know what they are up to behind the publics back. They do not want light shined on their activities, nor on the causes they support. Criminals and ne'er do wells have always operated in the shadows. It is sort of like an old saying that went something like "if you don't want your mother to know you do this, don't". Only this version is, if you don't want your customers to know what you support, how much money you spend on things that they oppose, then do it in the darkness hidden by lobbyists and Super Pacs. My position is the same as it has always been. The people's business should be conducted in public, always. If what my government does, in my name, has to be done behind closed doors without me knowing what they are doing and why, then they probably should NOT be doing it at all.

I simply do not buy the argument that diplomacy is delicate and must be conducted in the shadows. If that is what you are doing, then you are doing things I don't want my tax dollars used for, things I don't want my representatives doing. And I WANT to know what you are ALL doing so I can make informed choices on the ballot. I won't support someone who lies to me, who says one thing in public and does another in private. I want to know what they are doing and saying. In a republic, representative form of government where leaders are chosen by the people, the people NEED that information to make sound choices, and reject policies and people who do not share that voters beliefs. That can't happen with things done behind closed doors or as they said in my youth in smoke-filled rooms. Do it in public or don't do it all. Always. Everything. Transparency is what should be the mantra of government, in all things, all the time. Anything less is not acceptable in a free society. I don't choose to be a stooge or a puppet. I choose to be an informed citizen and I will vote only for people who feel the same. And who then walk the talk. When you do business or government in MY name, I damn well better know about it. Because I vote not only every other November, I vote every day in where I choose to shop and what businesses I choose to patronize. So, NO, it is NOT up to individual lobbyists to "decide" whether to comply with the law, it is their duty as citizens of America. And that law should be vigorously enforced. Far beyond not inviting them to dinner.

Bryna Pizzo (139)
Friday May 3, 2013, 3:27 pm
Thank you! Now we need a petition demanding a bill that ends lobbying.

. (0)
Friday May 3, 2013, 4:03 pm
This article lost its credibility in its ststement that this administration has contempt for lobbyists. This administration is empowered by the oil companies.He can't seem to get anywhere in enacting gun control, because his re-election committee took money from the NRA - they were not stupid, they gave to both parties.
As Obama will not touch the pharmacutical companies, and their immoral price gouging, it makes me wonder if this administration is not also allied to them.

Carol Dreeszen (346)
Friday May 3, 2013, 8:24 pm
I agree with you Allan 100%!! Anything Obama can get from a company he will scratch their backs and then they scratch his! You give me this much $$$$ and I will make sure this happens for you! It's all criminal activities that goes one! All we have to do is look at the shape of our country and see that! I don't care if they are Democrat OR Republican..this behind closed doors BS has got to stop! Vote them out!

Susanne R (234)
Friday May 3, 2013, 10:54 pm
Lobbying is increasingly in the shadows because the Supreme Court, with five Republican Justices voting in favor of and four Democratic Justices voting against, gave the lobbyists the perfect shadow to behind: their Citizens United ruling. No one wants to admit that they're buying elections because it stinks --just like the ruling that not only made it possible, but made it legal!

paul m (93)
Saturday May 4, 2013, 5:22 am

Noted....Good comments..

Robert K (31)
Saturday May 4, 2013, 5:57 am
Lobbying was illegal in the days of the founding of the country because they realized it was a direct path to corruption. The fact that it's now legal is a disgrace. It's even called lobbying because the lobbyists met with corrupt politicians in hotel lobbies to bribe them.

My suggestion, which would be law if I were Emperor of the United States would be that if you took money from a lobbyist and then voted for a measure that helped that person/company you would go to jail for a minimum of ten years without a trial, only an investigation as to whether you knew it would benefit your briber. If you didn't, you wouldn't go to jail, but your vote would be disallowed.

Now that I think of it, I really should be the emperor. ;o)

Deborah W (6)
Saturday May 4, 2013, 7:13 am
Lobbying: seeking to influence an issue. What happened to "we the people". and individual rights?

. (0)
Saturday May 4, 2013, 9:48 am
Thanks JL and Gene. I think you hit it right out of the park. Now let's do the same for the Super PACS which are just as bad. I think you should get rid of the Electoral College too.

Lois Jordan (63)
Saturday May 4, 2013, 3:34 pm
Thanks, Cal. These dark lobbyists are sure underhanded. I just read today the Kochs have a new one called the Association for American Innovation a.k.a. "Business League." People are easily fooled by the names these groups choose, and then donate money based on false premises.

lee e (114)
Sunday May 5, 2013, 3:06 pm
Thanks Gene - now I can keep my comment short - since you said it all! The Obama administration is hardly immune to this crap - but I've got to say - I wish there were other choices on the ballot than merely the two party devastation we're experiencing! This is a failed democracy that has chosen plutocracy +/or oligarchy, a far cry from what our founding fathers had in mind!
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