Lobbyists Drown Reform With Money:
Georgia lawmakers were inundated with lobbyist money as they considered and rejected a proposal by Gov. Sonny Purdue (R) to limit lobbyist contributions to lawmakers last year. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, lobbyists spent $1.1 million on the legislature in 2005, up by $250,000 from the previous year. The top 15 recipients were all Republicans, a partisan split not seen in years past. Most of the money was spent on wining and dining the lawmakers while tens-of-thousands were spent on tickets to Falcons games, Nascar events, and the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl. The legislature did pass an ethics reform last year that installed new measures for disclosure by lobbyists meeting with regulatory officials.