Good Thing They Tightened Ethics Rules
Ken Dilanian reports in USAToday that lobbyists are making use of their Capitol Hill-area offices and homes to get cozier than ever with members of Congress:
Despite a strict new ban on gifts to lawmakers, lobbyists routinely use these prime locations to legally wine and dine members of Congress while helping them to raise money, campaign records show. The lawmakers get a venue that is often free or low-cost, a short jaunt from the Capitol. The lobbyists get precious uninterrupted moments with lawmakers — the sort of money-fueled proximity the new lobbying law was designed to curtail. The public seldom learns what happens there because the law doesn’t always require fundraising details to be reported.
USAToday includes this nifty map, showing the prime locations.