Financial reform fundraising: Are lobbyists for Wall St. firms hosting hundreds of events for lawmakers?
Sam Geduldig, a lobbyist for high profile financial firms, banks and credit card companies who has the ability to “kill legislative threats to his clients,” is listed as a host on 18 invitations to fundraisers for Republican members of Congress and their leadership committees, a Sunlight Foundation Reporting Group review of Party Time data from January 2009 to the present has found.
Geduldig’s name appears on both fundraising invitations in Party Time and the Center for Responsive Politics’ lobbying database; Sunlight is also releasing a spreadsheet listing all matches of names hosts to names of lobbyist with links to the financial industry, covering more than 440 fundraisers in all (see below for more details).
Geduldig spent four years working for then-majority whip Rep. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., whom he advised on financial services issues; he’s also hosted four fundraisers for Blunt, while he was a registered lobbyist for influential banking and investment interests including the American Bankers Association, the Financial Services Roundtable and MasterCard.
During his ten year stint on the Hill, Geduldig helped Blunt build coalitions of interest groups to pass legislation; he also worked for Rep. Mike Oxley, R-Ohio., then Chairman of the Subcommittee on Financial Services of the House Financial Services Committee. He also served as a spokesman for Sen. Bob Dole’s presidential campaign.
The fundraiser invitations on which Geduldig’s name–in most cases, along with those of several other lobbyists–has appeared range from a barbeque for Blunt on June, 16, 2009 to “an intimate dinner” with House Financial Services Committee member Rep. Lynn Jenkins, R-Kan., at Ruth Chris’ Steak House on July 14, 2009. Geduldig did not respond to our e-mail and phone call.
The Senate is currently debating the various provisions in the new financial reform bill; we found more than 440 fundraisers for members of the Senate and the House on which names matching those of lobbyists for the financial industry appear. We’re making this data available on a spreadsheet (view it here). The spreadsheet lists the names of hosts from the Party Time database, the names of clients associated with those names in the Center for Responsive Politics lobbying database, the date and beneficiary of the fundraiser, and a link to the actual invitation on our Party Time site.
But one word of caution, we have not called each person on this list to verify their identity, nor do we always know that the fundraiser took place or if a specific lawmaker listed on an invitation actually was present. We offer this list as a guide for reporting on these fundraisers.
We receive the invitations from anonymous sources; we know our database does not contain a complete list of fundraising events. Thus, we cannot make a claim as to how many fundraisers took place, the number of lobbyists involved or the number of lawmakers for whom the fundraisers were held.
(To download this data go to the Menu tab and click on Download.)