Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Cross-posted for http://borell.dailykos.com/

I just had the strangest experience. A presidential candidate gave me back my donation, told me he would not accept it because of what I do for a living, and it left me more committeed to the candidate and conviced that he is the person that must be the next president.

I went to the mailbox and found a letter from the Obama Campaign. Enclosed was a check for $100, the return of my contribution from earlier this month along with a letter explaining why it would not be accepted.

You see, I am a registered lobbyist for a non-profit organziation.  We are a non-partisan, non-political membership organziation, we do not have a political action committee and strictly observe a policy of non-particpation in any event that even remotely appears political.  I serve as their legislative rep, trying to ensure that expertise of our membership is heard by public officials on issues related to their area of expertise (public safety).

I guess given the fact that I was not a corporate/industry lobbyist, I never really considered that Obama's no-lobbyist money ban would apply to me, but it did!  The letter thanked me for my interest in the campaign, but stated flately that my donation was not acceptable.  

It's not often you get told that you are persona non grata and end up praising the person who exiled you.  But that's what I am doing.  Obama actions are living up to his words.  Through the actions of his campaign he is demonstrating that his values are real and his commitment is certain.

Another aspect that is quite impressive to me is that the Obama campaign has a mechnism set up to check each donation, even one as small as mine, against the lobbyist database, and then return it.

If I ever doubted the sincerity of the Obama Campaign, this action removed any questions.

I know my donation is not going to make a difference one way or another, and I hope that I am not the type of "corrupt lobbyist" that has infested washington.  

Obama, and his campaign, are committed to bringing about change.  They are doing this in both large and small steps.  Refusing my money is a small step, but it spoke volumes to me.  It showed me Obama means what he says and backs it up with action.  It shows me that no detail is to small and that his organization is top notch.  It strengthened my commitment to see him elected President.  

I guess I just can't use my money to do it:).

p.s.:  As a side note, last year my spouse had set up automatic monthly payments to Hillary (nothing big $10/month) but after switching to Obama, had to battle with the Clinton campaign to cancel the automatic payment.  I find it ironic that one campaign won't take my money, the other won't give it back!

I though we had finally stopped the payments to the Clinton Campaign, but after checking with my spouse, it turns out they are still taking the payments 3-4 months after we asked them to stop.

Tags: campaign finance, lobbyist, obama, Recommended (all tags)

Comments

144 Comments

Tips, flames, recs

for a great diary from Borell.

by FOB92 2008-04-09 03:16PM | 0 recs
Your problem..you don't work for an oil...

company.

If you did, BO would gladly accept your money!

by Shazone 2008-04-09 03:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Your problem..you don't work for an oil...

Wow, how truly progressive of you. A Democratic candidate refuses lobbyist money and you manage to say something negative about him. Good on you.

by lizardbox 2008-04-09 03:20PM | 0 recs
Oh. L. O. L.

by Shazone 2008-04-09 03:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Your problem..you don't work for an oil...

I could care less if a million private individuals make small donations to Obama . . . or if they are CEO of Chevron . . . or pump gas at the corner station.

I am just glad that he takes ZERO from PACS!!

I am curious (honestly, I don't know the answer) does Hillary take PAC money?

I wouldn't hold it against her, just curious. She gets my vote against McWarMonger!

by FOB92 2008-04-09 03:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Your problem..you don't work for an oil...

yes she does.

by TruthMatters 2008-04-09 03:21PM | 0 recs
Oh. L. O. L.

by Shazone 2008-04-09 03:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Your problem..you don't work for an oil...

Yes she does. opensecrets.org has all the numbers

by lizardbox 2008-04-09 03:21PM | 0 recs
Oh. L. O. L.

by Shazone 2008-04-09 03:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Oh. L. O. L.

If you don'y have anything to say, why not shut up?  It it your aim to just be disruptive, or are you just innately obnoxious?

by fogiv 2008-04-09 03:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Oh. L. O. L.

I think it's happy hour at someone's house.

by toyomama 2008-04-09 03:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Oh. L. O. L.

^Someone should probably alert the admin to this spamming troll.

by dystopianfuturetoday 2008-04-09 06:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Oh. L. O. L.

Shazone has always been one of the more snarky HRC fans.

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 06:51PM | 0 recs
Oh. L. O. L.

by dystopianfuturetoday 2008-04-09 09:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Oh. L. O. L.

uprated...i think there's been a misunderstanding somewhere.

by Johnny Gentle Famous Crooner 2008-04-11 08:04AM | 0 recs
Re: Oh. L. O. L.

Humor is dead to MyDD.

by dystopianfuturetoday 2008-04-12 12:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Oh. L. O. L.

I don't think snarky is the word for it.

by JDF 2008-04-10 06:33AM | 0 recs
"Caustic" would be a better word.

Or perhaps "grating".

by Elsinora 2008-04-10 11:02AM | 0 recs
Re: Your problem..you don't work for an oil...

Hillary Clinton

PAC contributions       $1,157,939

by hootie4170 2008-04-09 03:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Your problem..you don't work for an oil...

Oh... Shazone!

by mikeinsf 2008-04-09 10:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Your problem..you don't work for an oil...

Heh....Priceless!

by Tennessean 2008-04-10 05:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Your problem..you don't work for an oil...
Stupid argument...

For two years I worked for one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. Fortune 100 company. While I was employed there, I would receive email from corp hq, telling me about how the company was giving money to the Rethug's and recommending I do the same.

But, I have always been a hardcore Democrat. I gave money to as many progressive Democrats as possible. Every time I donated, I had to put my employer and occupation on the form.

Would you count my 'small donations' to Democrats as "money from big pharma"? I was acting as an individual, not as the pharmaceutical corporation, which was just a job for me. Please try to understand the difference and stop obscuring the truth. Your dishonest post does not help Democrats or anyone.

by power of truth 2008-04-10 09:13AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

but, but, lobbyists are people too!

by lizardbox 2008-04-09 03:22PM | 0 recs
Why did you tell the Obama campaign...

what you do for a living? That's a little odd, IMO.

by soyousay 2008-04-09 03:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Why did you tell the Obama campaign...

well you have never donated to a campaign

you HAVE to tell them who you work for, because the campaigns have to report it.

how do you think we know how much Obama has gotten from oil companies? because when people donate they list an oil company as their job and it gets tracked.

so when you see he took $163K or that Hillary took $209K from oil companies, really they took that amount from people who work for the oil companies, from CEOs down to the janitor they all count in that number from companies

by TruthMatters 2008-04-09 03:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Why did you tell the Obama campaign...

You beat me to it!!

I thought that comment was snark!

I think it breaks FEC law to falsify your occupation on a contribution form.

Even Alex Rodriguez (the Yankee, not the HillaryIS44 dude) puts "Third Baseman" as his occupation, LOL!

BTW - AROD donates to the GOP :o(

by FOB92 2008-04-09 03:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Why did you tell the Obama campaign...

AROD=GOP?!?  

Yuck.  Maybe that's why he always sucks in the post-season (this from a Yanks fan).

I betcha Jeter's a Democrat (knock wood).

by fogiv 2008-04-09 03:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Why did you tell the Obama campaign...

Yep . .  AROD gave to BUSH-CHENEY and RUDY.

You can look anyone up at FEC website.

by FOB92 2008-04-09 03:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Why did you tell the Obama campaign...

Pandora's Box.  Sometimes, just sometimes, I'd rather not know.  ;)

by fogiv 2008-04-09 03:53PM | 0 recs
A-Rod is a jerk, Carlos Delgado is the man!
Carlos Delgado is a hardcore progressive, and he's a New York Met! (I'm a diehard Mets fan and was so psyched when Carlos joined the team.) He got into trouble for boycotting the "God Bless America" song at games back when he was a member of the Toronto Blue Jays.

Carlos is off to a great start this season, and I hope he keeps it up! Let's go Mets! Let's go Progressives! Let's go Democrats!

by power of truth 2008-04-10 09:18AM | 0 recs
I gave in 2004....

I don't recall releasing that info; it's been awhile. That being said...I no longer give any money to the "well to do."

You know why?

I give them my vote and IMO that's enough. Plus, you get a lot of bull shit in the mail asking for MORE money. You get phone calls asking for money. They put you on lists and the next thing you know, you're getting calls from everyone.

by soyousay 2008-04-09 04:00PM | 0 recs
Re: I gave in 2004....

I feel your pain . . . heck . . . I just signed up for HRC's website, and now Terry McAuliffe sends me an email for money every week.

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 04:05PM | 0 recs
Re: Why did you tell the Obama campaign...

Technically, you are not required to GIVE your employer info but the campaign is required to ASK. If you really don't want to tell them then the campaign is required to make a good faith follow up call and then they can legally be done trying to track down your employer.

by DreamsOfABlueNation 2008-04-09 08:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

I wonder how many letters like that were sent back to donors, signed by Mark Penn.

by toyomama 2008-04-09 03:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

You all are cracking me up!

by FOB92 2008-04-09 04:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

These responses are really a bad reflection on the writer.  I'm sorry you find these concerns amusing, since the right to vote, and the resposiblity to carefully assess candidate behavior are vital to other people, like the troops, who are vulnerable to the poor judgements people have made in expecting accountability from politicians, and insisting on it.

by URKnot 2008-04-09 05:48PM | 0 recs
You're Right, Of Course

I'm sorry if my twisted humor offended you.
I've read some of your comments. You are a sincere, concerned person.

But if I didn't keep my humor, this political stuff would have driven me insane 40 years ago, when I was trying to push back against another war, racism, and poverty.

So I hope you'll skip over my feeble attempts at irony.

Take what you need, and leave the rest.

by toyomama 2008-04-09 07:36PM | 0 recs
wow

have your spouse send it and I am sure it will be accepted.

by TeresaINPennsylvania 2008-04-09 03:25PM | 0 recs
Wow

That's actually the best idea you've had today, Teresa.

by toyomama 2008-04-09 03:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Wow

I wonder if that would be against FEC laws?!

Dunno?!

by FOB92 2008-04-09 03:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Wow

First of all, it's fine according to the FEC for a lobbyist to donate. The Obama campaign is more stringent than they.

And as long as the spouse is donating freely, it doesn't matter to the FEC who sent in the money first.  I'm not sure if the Obama campaign could police this or if that's even a good idea. I don't like the idea of not being able to contribute because my spouse can't.

by politicsmatters 2008-04-09 03:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Wow
No, it isn't, and spouses (and other family members) of a lobbyist can donate to the Obama campaign, although lobbyists themselves can't.
by sricki 2008-04-09 04:01PM | 0 recs
Re: wow

You are so condescending...I hope you don't view yourself as a progressive

by hootie4170 2008-04-09 03:30PM | 0 recs
Re: wow

I am curious do you have a problem with people who do take money from lobbyists or PACs? or what is your real problem?

I mean Obama does what no one else does and actually checks all donations against the lobbyist list out of principal, NO OTHER candidate does this, but does he get credit for it?  no

instead he gets flack because he doesn't ALSO track their spouses? meanwhile your own candidate doesn't care and will take money from pacs and lobbyists and who cares.

so honestly, what is exactly is the problem here for you?

by TruthMatters 2008-04-09 03:30PM | 0 recs
Re: wow

Agreed!

BTW - KUDOS to Borell!!

Rec'd!!!

:o)

This diary just inspired me to DONATE:


http://store.barackobama.com/

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 03:34PM | 0 recs
That's well and good...

but the fact that these candidates are raising almost one half billion dollars to get elected, with the media cheering them on and not discussing issues, does not change the fact that the system is corrupted and people should speak out.  Instead, we celebrate it.

by citizen53 2008-04-09 03:33PM | 0 recs
Re: That's well and good...

Valid point . . . I have always believed that we needed a Constitutional Amendment for true campaign finance reform.

Until then . . . we have to PLAY BALL with the existing rules.

by FOB92 2008-04-09 03:35PM | 0 recs
Re: That's well and good...

What do you mean they don't discuss issues? They do discuss issues.

by politicsmatters 2008-04-09 03:36PM | 0 recs
We hear and see different things...

when it comes to issues being discussed.  I see it all as marketing, not civic discourse.  It's the media and the candidates.

I refer to a Bob Herbert editorial from May 8, 2007:

It's true that promises from politicians come at us like weeds on steroids. But the nation would get a clearer picture of the character, integrity and leadership qualities of individual candidates if the press would focus more intently on matters of substance.

As a rule, we're much more interested in gaffes than in the details of a candidate's position on a complex issue. We're much more interested in sound bites than in sound policy.

That should change. We should give the candidates time to speak. And we should listen.

http://select.nytimes.com/2007/05/08/opi nion/08herbert.html

by citizen53 2008-04-09 04:34PM | 0 recs
Re: We hear and see different things...

Herbert's op-ed is about press coverage, not about what candidates do to promote their messages.

by politicsmatters 2008-04-09 05:11PM | 0 recs
It's all related and interrelated...

as the press also benefits from the millions spent by the candidates.

So when was the last time there was an ad about free trade or UHC or even campaign finance?

The fact is that ads are rarely about real issues.

by citizen53 2008-04-09 05:19PM | 0 recs
Re: It's all related and interrelated...

What do you suggest that Hillary and Obama do about it right now?

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 05:43PM | 0 recs
Speak to the issue...

and pledge to do something in earnest about it if elected.

by citizen53 2008-04-09 11:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Speak to the issue...

are you a disgruntled Kucinich dude?

by Veteran75 2008-04-10 04:14AM | 0 recs
Nope...

just a concerned citizen who has spent a lifetime speaking about issues that matter.

Some people have a problem with that and need to impugn.  

by citizen53 2008-04-10 10:22AM | 0 recs
Re: Nope...

Who is the voice that we should vote for that would speak to your concerns?

by Veteran75 2008-04-10 11:03AM | 0 recs
You have it backwards...

They are the ones seeking our votes.  We are the ones that make the demands.  Otherwise, they could care less.

At this time, no one speaks to this issue except in passing.  And that goes for the blogosphere as well.  When the tables are invariably turned, then the cries will return.  But opportunity will be lost.

by citizen53 2008-04-10 11:46AM | 0 recs
Re: You have it backwards...

 . . .OK . . . who speaks to it THE BEST?!

by FOB92 2008-04-11 11:40AM | 0 recs
Re: It's all related and interrelated...

I just looked at an ad Obama started running about the Medicare drug coverage and the power of lobbyists.  Is that enough of a real issue for you?

by politicsmatters 2008-04-09 05:53PM | 0 recs
Re: That's well and good...

I agree, they do.  

The problem is, we don't listen.

If we start asking for something else, and responding to something other than the next sensation, the media will change too.

But scandals are so much easier to understand.

by Kiku 2008-04-09 06:54PM | 0 recs
Re: That's well and good...

the media are heavily influenced by corporate ownership, if not outright controlled by it.  The world's fourth largest lobbyist firm, which actually does a whole lot more than just check numbers and statistics is also at work in two candidacies.  these lobby firms also have inroads with the media, and their own developed media distributors who deliberately obfuscate any real debate of facts or public concerns.

The "micro-targeting" policy that Mark Penn has developed means assessing, neighborhood by neighborhood, the ethnicity, race, religious views, socio-economic strata, as well as the fears and concerns most weighing on voters in those groups, and any difficulties with other groups.

then he, and his minions generate targeted mail and advertising which is designed to make people afraid, arouse anger and mistrust of social groups, mischaracterize events in a slanted fashion, and pit social groups against each other over whatever matter may work.  This firm can also "create" events from virtually nothing and then feed media stories that get a lot of air-time.

Television journalists are part of this.

In essence these firms have gotten whole segments of the population to vote against the very things they find most important and the things that would be in their own best interest, using these tactics.  If the public doesn't get more savvy about no getting het up and in a flap about such things, we won't have a democracy left.

This kind of division benefits the multinational corporations, and the wealthy 1% who own 80%+ of the wealth of this nation.  These tactics have been successfully used to sway votes away from worthwhile candidates and policies that would better serve the people, not the corporate elite.

That is why Senator Obama is leading a movement, to restore our laws, the checks and balances in our government, and the voice of citizens to our Democracy.

His is a community organizer par excellence.  He has determined a path based on faith in the American people, and he has demonstrated in words and dead in his campaign that he loves this country and our Constitution.

He has earned the credentials to be President of the United States better than any candidate in our lifetimes, and will lead our nation with dignity and integrity.

by URKnot 2008-04-09 06:03PM | 0 recs
Maybe your lifetime

I don't see Obama in such virtuous terms.

Here's something for you:

Additionally, looking at Public Citizen's list of bundlers for the Obama campaign (people soliciting donations from others), 27 are employed by law firms registered as federal lobbyists. The total sum raised February 16-29, 2008 by bundlers for Obama from these 27 firms: $2,650,000. (There are also dozens of high powered bundlers from Wall Street working the Armani-suit and red-suspenders cocktail circuits, like Bruce Heyman, managing director at Goldman Sachs; J. Michael Schell, vice chairman of Global Banking at Citigroup; Louis Susman, managing director, Citigroup; Robert Wolf, CEO, UBS Americas. Each raised over $200,000 for the Obama campaign.)

Senator Obama's premise and credibility of not taking money from federal lobbyists hangs on a carefully crafted distinction: he is taking money, lots of it, from owners and employees of firms registered as federal lobbyists but not the actual individual lobbyists. But is that dealing honestly with the American people? According to the website of Akin Gump, it takes a village to deliver a capital to the corporations:

"The public law and policy practice [lobbying] at Akin Gump is integrated throughout the firm's offices in the United States and abroad. As part of a full-service law firm, the group is able to draw upon the experience of members of other Akin Gump practices - including bankruptcy, communications, corporate, energy, environmental, labor and employment, health care, intellectual property, international, real estate, tax and trade regulation - that may have substantive, day-to-day experience with the issues that lie at the heart of a client's situation. This is the internal component of Akin Gump's team-based approach: matching the needs of clients with the appropriate area of experience in the firm ... Akin Gump has a broad range of active representations before every major committee of Congress and executive branch department and agency."

http://www.blackagendareport.com/index.p hp?option=com_content&task=view& id=548&Itemid=1

Like I said, the whole damn system is awash in money and corrupted, including Obama.  These are just politicians using whatever means and resources they can grab to get elected.  People need to speak out or they will never take our concerns seriously.

by citizen53 2008-04-09 11:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Maybe your lifetime

What is your solution, and who do you support?

Ron Paul?

by FOB92 2008-04-10 04:10AM | 0 recs
Look at my last sentence

No need for your gratuitous remark.

by citizen53 2008-04-10 10:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

I wish he rejected his racist pastor the same way.

by Scope441 2008-04-09 03:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

I wish Hillary would reject Sir Elton for calling religous people "hateful lemmings" . . . ohh wait . . . I don't give a crap, because I trust enough voters to have the intellect to look past "guilt by association" - - - McCain associates with Bush . . . that is worse to me!

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 03:51PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

You wish Obama had stuffed Rev. Wright into an envelope along with a returned check and a form letter?

by thatpurplestuff 2008-04-09 03:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

You just won the award for funniest comment I have read on MyDD!!

ROTF LMAO

:o)))))

by FOB92 2008-04-09 04:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

I find it fascinating that you so easily condemn a human being on the basis of a few carefully selected sound bytes from a sermon where he was quoting a speaker from Fox news.  Truly you are drinking Mark Penn's Koolaid, the kind of lie he is paid to make up and sell.

I wonder how you would feel if some partial thing you said, out of context, in some forum or other was broadcast nationally to libel your character, your lifework, and the values you worked all your life to demonstrate; like caring for the poor, the sick, folks who suffer from a variety of social problems, and to spread a message of Christ's love and compassion; then a wealthy ego-maniac with a world wide reputation for making bad guys look lilly white goes after you.

Imagine you're in your sixties or seventies and are now receiving death threats from people who have no personal knowledge of you.

What if it's a lie.  Wouldn't this be fascism?
Well it is, and that is what Mark Penn deals in.
This is what he does all over the world; smears people or their relations to try to create public hate and ruin reputations.  He does this a lot.  Like when he represents the Columbian government where people are murdered for trying to unionize or engage in human rights work.  Or covering up poisonings of children by chemical companies.

He's paid to manipulate you, and you have gulped down the kool-aid without scruple.

by URKnot 2008-04-09 06:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

I think you might be responding to the wrong person... my comment was just a joke about mail.

by thatpurplestuff 2008-04-09 06:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Ha! Great response.

Kind of reminds me of this.  :)

Gotta love Happy Gilmore.

by Johnny Gentle Famous Crooner 2008-04-09 06:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

The link wouldn't work for me . . . what line was it?

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 06:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!
Shooter McGavin: I eat pieces of shit like you for breakfast!
Happy Gilmore:You eat pieces of shit for breakfast?
by Johnny Gentle Famous Crooner 2008-04-09 06:38PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Why do Obama supporters have all the sense of humor on this site?

by FOB92 2008-04-09 06:41PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

I'm sure Clinton supporters have senses of humor, but maybe not when they're here talking about the campaign. If I had to guess, I think it might have something to do with the candidates' positions. When I watch a game, I usually don't feel like being funny when my team is down with time running out.

by Johnny Gentle Famous Crooner 2008-04-09 06:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Yeah . . . I really have empathy for Howard Wolfson. He seems like he would be a funnier guy if Mark Penn hadn't ruined HRC's campaign.

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 07:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Greatest Comment Ever!!!

by zep93 2008-04-10 05:48AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

I think it's great you're so impressed that Obama doesn't take lobbyist money.  I, too, am impressed.  I'm also impressed Obama is running ads in PA stating he doesn't take oil co. money.  Oh, wait.  No candidate can take oil co. money.  I guess he's being legally ethical; or is it ethically legal; or is it obfuscating the truth.

by ChitownDenny 2008-04-09 04:47PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

I am glad you admit your admiration for Obama's return of a lobbyist's donation! I feel the warmth in the room, and the Denver KUMBAYA coming!

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 04:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Oil Companies have PACs.  PACs can give money, but Obama does not take any money from PACs.  Thus, Obama does not take any money from oil companies.  Hillary has taken $435,000 from Business PACs.

by nklein 2008-04-09 06:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Or the employment disclosures from individual citizens are being tabulated as "oil money" when they are personal donations.  Maybe from employees who know things are off kilter.

when you make a donation are you voting your private interests or your employers?  Should your private donation be characterized as coming from the company?

by URKnot 2008-04-09 06:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Very good point!

by FOB92 2008-04-09 07:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!
Can we put this stupid argument to bed already? "Oil Company Money" is not the same as "contributions from employees of Oil companies".

Read my comment above about how I worked for "Big Pharma" and donated to Democrats. Was my small dollar donation a contribution from Big Pharma?

Hardly.

by power of truth 2008-04-10 09:29AM | 0 recs
Nice resume add

I was just thinking that when Alexa Chappell took this deputy compliance job . . . did she realize it would be for an organization that would raise more money from Americans than many corporations are worth?!

She will have a great line to add to her resume when it is all wrapped up in November.

by FOB92 2008-04-09 05:08PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Obama is so cool.  In every meaning of the word.   The contrast to Hillary through the campaign has been remarkable.  

People are already learning a different way to think about themselves, and how to relate to each other.

He is creating a new model for campaigning that will be copied in the future, I'm sure.

It's kind of hard to understand how we got to the point that the "truth" would be novel.  He couldn't have had a better antagonist.  If this election were written as a novel, it wouldn't make it past the editor has being to polemic and unrealistic.

It will be one for the history books.  

Good luck with getting your money back, I've heard other stories about Hillary like this.

Thanks for writing this!  I'm going to link it to some other stories.

by Kiku 2008-04-09 05:11PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Yep, this inspired me to donate again!

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 07:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

The truth and integrity are a rare thing indeed. I love that Obama has studied and taught Constitutional law.  It has been years since anyone in the White House had the legal chops to think critically about how the branches of government were meant to relate to one another, and how this has become so eroded that we are barely a Democracy.

I really feel like a Patriot.  Like I am fighting for my country in this campaign because it has finally aroused interest and enthusiasm for government, by giving us an intelligent leader who doesn't play the lobby strategist distraction game.

After Dubya's tactics and the corruption and manipulation around that election, the behind the scenes power dynamics and manipulation of rules and constant Orwellian doublespeak just don't cut it anymore.

We're ready for someone who's more like most of us; willing to work hard and to work for things we all care about.

I am so relieved that this campaign did go on longer than expected.  It certainly has shown what we might have voted for and the tentacles behind the other two candidacies with Mark Penn, foreign governments, and really exposed the divisive, manipulative lobby tactics that have infested our media, so that we get very little intelligent dialogue.

by URKnot 2008-04-09 06:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

We will need your fighting spirit to trounce McCain, and sweep in with a mandate for change!

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 08:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Thank goodness for the internet, otherwise this would not have been possible.  In fact, I think Hillary relies on people not hearing the facts.

by Kiku 2008-04-10 05:00PM | 0 recs
This is called politics!

Well this would have been a laudable thing if the truth about this alleged Obama virtue (i.e. not taking contributions from lobbyists or political action committees) was indeed a strightforward truth. As is the case, Obama is but only a recent convert to this whole idea of not accepting lobbyist/PAC money. You can find several links if you bother to google. But some examples from the following LINK are below:

In Obama's eight years in the Illinois Senate, from 1996 to 2004, almost two-thirds of the money he raised for his campaigns -- $296,000 of $461,000 -- came from PACs, corporate contributions, or unions, according to Illinois Board of Elections records. He tapped financial services firms, real estate developers, healthcare providers, oil companies, and many other corporate interests, the records show.

Obama's US Senate campaign committee, starting with his successful run in 2004, has collected $128,000 from lobbyists and $1.3 million from PACs, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonprofit organization that tracks money in politics. His $1.3 million from PACs represents 8 percent of what he has raised overall. Clinton's Senate committee, by comparison, has raised $3 million from PACs, 4 percent of her total amount raised, the group said.

I guess as a matter of strategy Obama/Axelrod tried to come up with a few convenient things that will make easy talking point and allow them to draw contrast against a better qualified/better known candidate like Hillary. Frankly this appears like another form of "fear mongering" on the part of Obama in trying to appeal to publics aprehension about the government being in the pocket of big money. When it comes to real policy there are numerous examples that Obama's ear have been more than open to big campaign contributors/supporters.

When hear about these empty gestures and these election season conversions on the part of Obama, it honestly makes me respected him even lesser and not more. If democrats fall for these phony antics and end up choosing a much lesser qualified candidate as their nominee then I guess they deserve the fate that they may face come November.

by ScottinNJ 2008-04-09 08:11PM | 0 recs
Re: This is called politics!

YOU are EXACTLY right . . . we deserve to CREAM McCain in the GE.

McCain will have no chance against Hillary or Obama.  Thank you for showing your "concern" for the Democratic party.

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 08:36PM | 0 recs
Re: This is called politics!
Well I'm tempted to say that I have contributed more money/time to Democratic party since I started thinking of myself as a democrat (thank you Bill!) than probably you have but I wouldn't go there since I don't have any clue what you have done. So let me just say that I don't need a certificate from anybody regarding my "concern" for the democratic party.
(BTW didn't McCain almost join the democratic party in 2002. So may be he's cool after all .. ;-)
by ScottinNJ 2008-04-09 08:54PM | 0 recs
Re: This is called politics!

I fund raised my ass off for Bill in 1992, and even served in the Army under his watch . . . but I don't feel like I owe him some blind loyalty.

I owe my soldiers and children a better future, and one that does not include a conservative Supreme Court or an endless war.

BOTH DEMS are fine with me!

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 08:57PM | 0 recs
Re: This is called politics!

Thanks for the background. Your contributions to the democratic party/country are commendable and I applaud those without any reservations.

Regarding the dem candidates, I obviously prefer Hillary by a lot; although, not because of any blind loyalty to Bill. I just find her so much more qualified .. I guess Bill summarized her difficulties best after the Iowa caucuses "I can't make her younger, taller, ..more male".

by ScottinNJ 2008-04-09 09:43PM | 0 recs
Re: This is called politics!
Everyone is entitled to their opinion.

Personally, I don't think Hillary has nearly the qualifications or experience of Obama. Hillary has 'some' experience, but was mostly on the sidelines as First Lady and before that she protected WALMART from workers trying to organize. Not the experience I'm looking for in the White House.

I'm proud of Obama's work here in Chicago. He is the leader we need now for real change, not the "DLC candidate".

by power of truth 2008-04-10 09:36AM | 0 recs
Re: This is called politics!

I'm tempted to say that my dad can beat up your dad but I won't go there because I have no clue who your dad is.

wtf?

by recusancy 2008-04-09 09:08PM | 0 recs
Re: This is called politics!

Sure if your dad is known to go around beating up other people's dads a lot.. I'll say that go ahead take the plunge! On the other hand my dad can beat up other dads so i'll say be careful .. :-)

Anyway the point was meant only for Veteran75 as he had some implicit doubts about my "concern". So my thoughts on your comment ... whatever

by ScottinNJ 2008-04-09 09:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

I guess Obama really took the high road by rejecting this contribution.  Too bad he didn't reject his racist preacher in the same manner.

by Scope441 2008-04-09 08:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

too bad you aren't progressive enough to look past Faux news soundbites!

Sad :o(

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 08:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

The sad life of a Hillary Follower, clinging to the shreds of the Wright Kefuffle.

by jwolf 2008-04-09 08:41PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Resucing the comment as there was no need to hide it. In fact the responses to the comment are equally divisive but at the end, each one is an opinion of an individual. We should be mature enough to listen to them.

by Sandeep 2008-04-10 12:57AM | 0 recs
To quote thatpurplestuff's great post:

You wish Obama had stuffed Rev. Wright into an envelope along with a returned check and a form letter?

by Elsinora 2008-04-10 11:12AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

"As is the case, Obama is but only a recent convert to this whole idea of not accepting lobbyist/PAC money."

But...he did make the change.

Meanwhile, Hillary is still hauling it in.

Pretty striking contrast.

by jwolf 2008-04-09 08:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Wright isn't a racist. He is a conspiracy theorist.

The world has got plenty of those. It would be like Hank Hill having to renounce and reject Dale Gribble.

by Darknesse 2008-04-09 08:58PM | 0 recs
Just have your spouse, boyfriend

or significant other send in the contribution and they'll take it. That's how all the other "lobbyist" are getting around it. Or you could become a "bundler" and raise other people's money and send it to the campaign.

by LatinoVoter 2008-04-09 09:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Just have your spouse, boyfriend

We talked about that up-thread. It may not be illegal to do what you suggested . . . it would be unethical for a lobbyist to do that.

by Veteran75 2008-04-09 09:06PM | 0 recs
Well there are a lot of

unethical lobbyists out there and the Obama campaign is accepting their unethical money and looking the other way.

The campaign received $50,566 from 49 lobbyists, but aides flagged the checks during initial screening and said they will return the money. Still, for hosting events and otherwise raising money, the Obama fundraising team is relying on partners in lobbying firms who are not registered for specific clients, former lobbyists who recently dropped clients and spouses of lobbyists. The strategy allows Obama's team to reach the wealthy clients of lobbying firms while technically complying with his pledge.

Joanne Hannett, whose husband, Fred, is a lobbyist for UnitedHealth Group and other clients, is helping raise money for Obama. Although Fred Hannett attended an Obama event, he said he has not personally donated any money or "solicited any of my clients."

Obama also has no prohibition against using state lobbyists to raise money, even when they represent companies with business before the federal government.

"I like that he is not accepting money from federal lobbyists," said Bellamy, a onetime federal lobbyist who now lobbies the Maryland legislature for such clients as Internet giant AOL and defense contractor Lockheed Martin. "I think people find that interesting and insightful that he won't be beholden to those with interests before the federal government."


Obama Taps Two Worlds To Fill 2008 War Chest

by LatinoVoter 2008-04-09 09:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Well there are a lot of

It is a much better track record than any other presumptive nominee. . . anyway I know this letter will inspire many more donations than the $100 returned :o)

Hooah!!

by Veteran75 2008-04-10 04:17AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

The idea that all lobbyists are the same doesn't impress me. Non-profit lobbyists are clearly different than corporate lobbyists. Do non-profit lobbyists have private jets? Do they take politicians on golfing tours in Ireland or the Bahamas? Do they, in fact, lobby for issues that damage poor and middle-class Americans? No, they do not.

Throwing out the baby with the bathwater, especially when cynically accepting the bathwater in other ways, is just one more political con job. Stop being so naive.

by bently2 2008-04-09 10:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

 There's a great cartoon over at TPM today, dad's readin the paper. kid looks up at 'im, headline on paper reads:
 234 million raised in prediential campaign by Obama (no wonder he could send your check back)
anyway kid says to dad
   "Like ...how smart is someone who spends $234 million for a job that pays $400 thousand?"
  BTW this is only the primaries-hope you all have deep pockets 'cause he'll need a hell of a lot more of it for the GE. If I'm not mistaken he has less in his GE fund than HIllary does.

 I feel for those poor folks in Pa. who are getting pummeled w/Obama ads-it does smack of desperation to me. or abuse-"Vote for me 'bam, vote for me 'bam, vote for me 'bam..."

 Wonder how that money could have been better spent after a while it all does get pretty disgusting.

 Obama does have lobbyists/former lobbyists working for him and has softened his stance on having lobbyists working for him in the White House.

 Oh and btw-my mom could've taken on both of your dads.  Ouch, I felt a smack from  heaven for that one-sorry mom!

 Namaste

by artsykr 2008-04-09 10:57PM | 0 recs
Less in his GE fund.

I don't know about other people but I plan to max out my contribution once the primary is over.  I didn't want to blow the whole wad on the primary when we still have repuglies to trounce.

by GFORD 2008-04-09 11:36PM | 0 recs
Thoughts on PA

From what I've heard, Pennsylvanians are quite happy that the primaries made it this far, as in most election cycles they're nigh powerless to choose candidates.

Anyways, I'm fairly certan that, even if you're cynical to think that Obama's in this for the paycheck, that you'll realize that one's moneymaking prospects after being president are... drastically increased.  Bill Clinton proved that much.

by Dracomicron 2008-04-10 05:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!
woke up too early,,but this post pleased me.
It does demonstrate diligence on the part of the campaign. Of course some commenter's cannot recognize anything positive about an opposing campaign...well their responses demonstrate their "best shot."
It would be interesting to send $10 to the Clinton campaign. Who knows maybe they both do it..now THAT would be cool.
by nogo war 2008-04-10 02:51AM | 0 recs
Some Obama quotes on the subject

The whole issue of money in politics is one that I'm constantly struggling with, because my preference would be that we've got public financing of campaigns and nobody has to raise money whatsoever. - All Things Considered, October 19, 2006.

The underlying issue of how extensively money influences politics is the original sin of everyone who's ever run for office--myself included.  In order to get elected, we need tor aise vast sums of money by meeting and dealing with people who are disproportionally wealthy. - Lobbying Reform Summit, January, 2006

Obama has clearly been thinking about these issues for quite a long time, and I think his solution is elegant and powerful.  Getting average people involved and making them own the success and failure of their candidates on a more fundamental level is going to change politics.

I, myself, am going to donate some of my tax return money to the Obama campaign.  The Feds got to bank some interest off of my money, now I'm going to give it to someone who I know will use it responsibly.

by Dracomicron 2008-04-10 05:06AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Are you so clueless that you didn't even know you were a lobbyist?

"Well, My Goodness" as Donald Rumsfeld, Obama's favorite "mainstream" Bush appointee would say. [eye-rolling]

by Tennessean 2008-04-10 05:55AM | 0 recs
Wow, not helpful

The diarist explained why it was surprising.

by Dracomicron 2008-04-10 06:21AM | 0 recs
Honesty is a wonderful thing

I am an Information Security guy - been at it for a long long time.  Yesterday at the RSA show in San Francisco (a tradeshow where all the infosec vendors and other experts get together) I held a panel discussion on Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliance and what it means for our industry and the market.

As many of you may know, there have been a number of very public security compromises of credit card databases, and this has lead to the PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS - my industry is all about acronyms ;).

Two things are interesting to me about this diary in the context of the above:

1/  All of this information security stuff is - to me - at the end of the day about words like: "honesty", "veracity", "truth" - all those Boy Scout words that have become so generally unpopular in common parlance are specific technical qualities as real as crankshafts and bolts to folks like me.

2/  The PCI DSS and the direction that the financial systems and infosec are moving are evolving both more security and privacy as well as more transparency.  

It will continue to become more possible for well-organized people and organizations to know for a fact whether they are being treated honestly and truthfully. In the diarist's experience with both the Obama and Clinton campaigns we see signs of how this plays out:

While it is notable that the Obama campaign actually caught such a minor and I am almost entirely certain unintentional technical infraction, it is not really all that surprising.  This is the same organization that has been so incredibly efficient with all of the processes of creating and running itself and most pertinently utilizing the electronic infrastructure in a highly mature and evolved fashion, so if you thought about it you might expect this level and type of effectiveness.

On the other hand, while anyone opposed to the Clinton campaign might get an impression of greediness out of their ability to stop taking the diarist's money, I think it is much more likely that the intent is not malicious, but rather - and more tellingly - that the organization is simply not as highly evolved as the Obama organization.

This, I think, is the most pragmatic lesson to get out of the entire Democratic contest.  Of the two remaining contenders, one is very much part of the current culture and working in sync with the world as it is and as it is becoming - the other is only vaguely aware that things have changed and is not leveraging the systems and efficiencies in the market.

Finally, that this instance provides an opportunity for one of the camps (Obama) to demonstrate empirically the veracity and transparancy of it's intentions and actions, while the other camp (Clinton) appears as dishonest and underhanded (again, I don't think that is truly the intent, only the result) demonstrates the validity of the Emerging financial, electronic, governmental and business systems that have taken over while the Paper Envelope Generation (my generation) wasn't paying very strict attention.

As someone who obsesses with the implications of these emergent systems and how they impact Security - and by nature Honesty - I think this diary makes an incredibly important point about Business and current and future politics.

Honesty is good Business.

-chris blask

by chrisblask 2008-04-10 06:31AM | 0 recs
You're probably right

The Clinton online fundraising machine seems like they slapped it together when they realized that they were getting crushed by Obama's small donation generator.

Old school politicians, they weren't in it on the ground floor.

by Dracomicron 2008-04-10 06:35AM | 0 recs
Re: You're probably right

One of the points I make frequently - and that is frequently adopted - is that ground-floor access in the past a requirment for involvement in the present.  If it were, then I and everyone who built/builds this stuff has failed.

You're right, though, old-school though patterns often believe that what worked years ago must work today - and often that is correct - but if the old-school idea was leveraging a flawed system then it is possible that the flaw has been fixed in the meantime(and positive if so).  Kinda like the old "hey, I know a telephone code we can use to call long distance free as much as we want!" - simply because something less than perfect/honest worked should not be taken as an indication that it will continue to do so.

-cheers!

-chris

by chrisblask 2008-04-10 07:33AM | 0 recs
No, I get ya

There's no reason that Clinton couldn't have hired a crackerjack web team to set up her online donations system and had just as good a machine as Obama... but my point is that she and her people might not understand that there are drastic quality differences in website construction depending on who you hire to do it.  

Obama, being an IT-friendly guy, likely knew (or did the reasearch to learn about) exactly who to turn to for unassailable quality.  Clinton, I don't know what she did, but if she's going with old thought paradigms, she might have gone with the firm of a friend of a friend, or perhaps even just popped the phone book.  It's clear she didn't have as much money as Obama when it started becoming a serious problem for her, so perhaps she cut corners here, too.

I know a lot of guys in the field, and most of them would have never have let a system take $5800 from someone who only meant to give about $1200.  Not only is it immoral and negligant, but it implicates the donator in campaign finance fraud.

by Dracomicron 2008-04-10 08:10AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty is a wonderful thing

once again you hit the nail on the head. I know you are busy in SF, but I hope you can diary this comment.

by Veteran75 2008-04-10 07:29AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

I'm actually not impressed with this.  It's more like a campaign covering their asses to make sure they don't get called out on accepting lobbyists money.  

Now we all know that Obama has accepted corporate money.  He likes to word it differently.  But don't worry, he's got enough money to keep going.  You can use that $100 for a charity advertised on "American Idol".  

by stefystef 2008-04-10 06:47AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

As opposed to not caring whether you take lobbyist money at all, like Clinton?

Obama can't win with some folks.  

by Dracomicron 2008-04-10 08:13AM | 0 recs
This diary

Points out the patent absurdity in Obama's absolutist position on lobbyists. They aren't all shills for big business or foreign governments. They aren't all corrupt. It is not inherently wrong to do business or interact with lobbyists.

by Mayor McCheese 2008-04-10 07:07AM | 0 recs
Re: This diary

Ah!  Cynicism and sneering!

How refreshing.

Aside from simply snarking in response to your daggers (and make no mistake, the above is unfiltered snark), I would like to add an honest suggestion that the above commentor and other's tempted to lob cynical stink bombs in response to honest discourse should consider whether this approach either moves their goals forward or makes the world something they would want to live in (or want their kids to live in).

I am certain that all the true cynics could find a downside to giving puppies to children, however I am not at all certain that this viewpoint ever caused anything worthwhile to happen in the world.

-chris

by chrisblask 2008-04-10 07:27AM | 0 recs
Re: This diary

It's Obama's strategy that is cynical in and of itself. he had no problem with lobbyists donating to his prior campaigns. He had no problem with a lobbyist having a high position in his New Hampshire campaign. He has no problem taking money from their spouses and business partners or from state lobbyists. He also says they'll have a place at the table in his health care debate.

by Mayor McCheese 2008-04-10 07:42AM | 0 recs
EVERYONE gets a place at the table

Lobbyists have legitimate concerns at the health care debate, but he's not going to let them just write the policy, like the Republicans have been doing.  They get a piece of the say just like everyone else.

Lobbyist are people, too, and the spouces of lobbyists are seperate beings.  Unless you're trying to say that wives cannot act against the wishes of their husbands (or vice versa), then I'm not really sure what you're trying to say about accepting donations from the spouces of lobbyists.

Obama has repeatedly said that he doesn't like the current system of campaign finance and would like to change it... that he's had to play the game just like everyone else.  The best way for him to change it is by sitting in the big chair at the big desk in the roundish room.  I think he's done an admirable job juggling expedience with morals.

by Dracomicron 2008-04-10 08:18AM | 0 recs
Re: This diary

:-)

by Veteran75 2008-04-10 08:23AM | 0 recs
Practicality

Treating lobbyists differently would require scrutinizing each donation from a lobbyist and making a judgment call on whether they are a "good" lobbyist or a "bad" lobbyist. I just can't see that being feasible from a practical standpoint.

by Purplepeople 2008-04-10 07:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Practicality

What you suggest would not be difficult at all. There aren't that many lobbyists. Candidates refuse and/or return donations from individuals or PACs that they find unsavory or have reason to believe the donation is not legitimate. Why could the same not be applied to lobbyists?

by Mayor McCheese 2008-04-10 07:40AM | 0 recs
Re: Practicality

Not working in this field I don't know for certain it wouldn't be too difficult, I'm just guessing. But my guess is this would add a lot of overhead to screening donations. Rather than just checking against a list of lobbyists you would have to create a list of lobbyists that are ok and lobbyists that are not ok. And then you would have to defend that list when people felt like they shouldn't be on it. It just seems like a massive headache. Maybe if it really is easy the next iteration of this process will have some capability like you suggest.

by Purplepeople 2008-04-10 07:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Practicality

It wouldn't be too hard. Would it increase tranaction costs, sure it would. By a bit. How hard would it be to have a couple of young college kids make an excel of acceptable groups?I've processed campaign contributions before in the 90s, when internet technology was nowhere what it is today. If someone listed "lobbyist" as an occupation and you wanted to see for whom, how hard would it be to shoot that person and email or call them?

by Mayor McCheese 2008-04-10 07:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

So why do Obama fans sing him praise for returning this money and give him a pass for associating with his preacher for 20 years?  hypocritical to me.

by Scope441 2008-04-10 07:44AM | 0 recs
And these are even remotely related how?

by Purplepeople 2008-04-10 07:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Should we denounce Hillary for associating with Elton John?

Sir Elton called religious leaders "hateful lemmings."

I didn't know progressives used the guilt-by-association tactic?

I am not worried the GOP will fall this year to either DEM!

by FOB92 2008-04-10 11:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Because they speak to who he will and won't associate himself with. He'll accept help from Wright, but not a few dollars from someone registered as one of the eevvvvil lobbyists.

by Mayor McCheese 2008-04-10 07:49AM | 0 recs
Nobody said they were "evil"

He's denying influence peddlers to make a point.  His choice of friends has nothing to do with it.

by Dracomicron 2008-04-10 08:20AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Your money would have been accepted if you had bundled. See article in Black Agenda Report,

The Obama Bubble: Why Wall Street Needs a Presidential Brand

...

"The total sum raised February 16-29, 2008 by bundlers for Obama from  27 law firms that engage in lobbying: $2,650,000."

Additionally, looking at Public Citizen's list of bundlers for the Obama campaign (people soliciting donations from others), 27 are employed by law firms registered as federal lobbyists. The total sum raised February 16-29, 2008 by bundlers for Obama from these 27 firms: $2,650,000. (There are also dozens of high powered bundlers from Wall Street working the Armani-suit and red-suspenders cocktail circuits, like Bruce Heyman, managing director at Goldman Sachs; J. Michael Schell, vice chairman of Global Banking at Citigroup; Louis Susman, managing director, Citigroup; Robert Wolf, CEO, UBS Americas. Each raised over $200,000 for the Obama campaign.)

Senator Obama's premise and credibility of not taking money from federal lobbyists hangs on a carefully crafted distinction: he is taking money, lots of it, from owners and employees of firms registered as federal lobbyists but not the actual individual lobbyists. But is that dealing honestly with the American people? According to the website of Akin Gump, it takes a village to deliver a capital to the corporations:

"The public law and policy practice [lobbying] at Akin Gump is integrated throughout the firm's offices in the United States and abroad. As part of a full-service law firm, the group is able to draw upon the experience of members of other Akin Gump practices - including bankruptcy, communications, corporate, energy, environmental, labor and employment, health care, intellectual property, international, real estate, tax and trade regulation - that may have substantive, day-to-day experience with the issues that lie at the heart of a client's situation. This is the internal component of Akin Gump's team-based approach: matching the needs of clients with the appropriate area of experience in the firm ... Akin Gump has a broad range of active representations before every major committee of Congress and executive branch department and agency."

...

And the myth that he is funded mostly by small donors is just that -- myth... O! spent the other day soaking up more "people powered" contributions from California billionaires. He banned the media from any attendance at this series of billionaire fundraisers, but this woman made her way and covered it as best she could. With pix! Kind of smashes his whole "small donors" meme.... change you can believe in!

Obama Visits Billionaires Row

by jen 2008-04-10 08:09AM | 0 recs
Bulldagger

http://www.factcheck.org/askfactcheck/wa s_obama_correct_to_say_90_of.html

34% of Obama's money comes from donations of $200 or less, compared to 24% for McCain and 16% for Clinton.

by Dracomicron 2008-04-10 08:36AM | 0 recs
Diary with no constructive purpose

This diary has no constructive purpose. It's written to make Hillary Clinton's campaign seem dishonest or incompetent (you pick an adjective) while falsely portraying Barack Obama's campaign as highly principled. There is nothing significant about your claim since Obama and Clinton would gladly accept your wife's check. By the way, I've been a long-term Hillary Clinton supporter and have had monthly payment deducted from my bank account. When I canceled (so that I could donate at my own pace), Clinton's campaign took care of it with no problem.

by zenful6219 2008-04-10 08:44AM | 0 recs
It is significant.

Clinton would have accepted both his check AND his wife's check.  Obama is 1 for 2 on principle  alone there.

by Dracomicron 2008-04-10 12:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

I do not fully understand Obama's "no lobbyist money" stance. Personally, I'd rather have him accept your money (from how you describe yourself and your political involvement) than the money he does take directly from corporations and corporate bundlers.

Clearly, there is greed-based corruption in DC with corporate lobbyists who use big money to influence politicians to work in favor of corporate interests, pollute the environment, promote the rich-get-richer mentality, block healthcare reform etc.

However, I can't see the point in politicians not taking money from non-profit groups which have a social or political agenda? Isn't that the point of such groups? To raise money for a common cause and to educate politicians and policy makers about the details and intricacies of the causes and the group's desired outcome?

Politicians cannot be expected to understand the nuances of a cause without this information from those on the "front lines" with the in-depth and first-hand knowledge of a specific issue. As you say, "I serve as their legislative rep, trying to ensure that expertise of our membership is heard by public officials on issues related to their area of expertise (public safety)."

To my mind, political and social activists should have a right to advocate and communicate directly with politicians and give money to the candidate they feel best serves their agenda. What is wrong with that? Maybe I'm being naive?

I think that the word "lobbyist" has been given the black mark unnecessarily by Obama. Surely, some lobbying activity is appropriate and needed in DC?

In any case, there are clearly lots of ways that you could get your money involved in the Obama campaign, through a family member or a PAC or 527 advocating on his behalf. It is all kind of smoke-and-mirrors in my opinion. His stance sounds good, but how realistic is it really?

by twinmom 2008-04-10 09:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

The people complaining about Obama not refusing money from spouse or employees really should try to keep in mind the old aphorism "the perfect is the enemy of the good" and realize the Barack's doing more than  any other presidential canidate, so complaing that he isn't stringent enough then voting for Hill or Big John is more than a bit disigenuous.

by Socraticsilence 2008-04-10 10:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Didn't Want My Money!

Agreed!

Someone needed to take the first step.

by Veteran75 2008-04-10 11:55AM | 0 recs

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