White House opens door to big donors and lobbyists come along for the ride

Remember that early Barack Obama pledge to ban lobbyists from roles in his administration? Remember the promise of transparency? Remember the decrying of the role of special interests? As we now know those were "just words" that were campaign fodder for Barack Obama and were thrown under the bus after the election. Waivers were granted to allow lobbyists to serve as key officials in the administration, often linked to the spending of taxpayer dollars. The transparency pledge was avoided by such stunts as having lobbyists meet with White House officials across the street from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue at a coffeehouse so their names would not appear on White House visitor logs. Now comes further revelations that Obama has extended the welcome mat to lobbyists and their powerful special interest clients. Mike McIntire and Michael Luo write in the New York Times that big donors often have visited the White House and bring along lobbyists with them: Although Mr. Obama has...(Read Full Post)