Sunrise (2/24/11)



Sunlight: “Last week The Hill reported on the ever-expanding lobbying footprint of Facebook in Washington. The company hired the lobbying firm Fierce, Isakowitz & Blalock, a firm close to Republicans in high office. At the same time, the firm hired another lobbying firm, Elmendorf Strategies, with close connections to Democratic congressional leadership. … The Facebook lobbying registration lists three registered lobbyists from Elmendorf Strategies. They are Elmendorf, Jimmy Ryan, and Brian LaSala. Ryan is a former chief of staff to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. He served the Nevada Senator for a decade before leaving to head the lobbying shop of Citigroup. Ryan bolted Citigroup in 2009 to work for Elmendorf. LaSala formerly worked as Counsel for Sen. Kerry on issues related to the Massachusetts Senator’s work on the Small Business, Commerce, and Finance Committees. LaSala also previously worked as a lobbyist for Microsoft. … The dual hiring of Elmendorf Strategies and Fierce, Isakowitz & Blalock provide Facebook with entree into both the halls of the Democratic Senate Leadership and the Republican House Leadership.”


WSJ: “Crossroads GPS, the well-funded conservative campaign group that doesn’t disclose its donors, launched radio ads today bashing Democrats and applauding Republicans in 22 House districts that could be battlegrounds in 2012. … Crossroads, which has links to Karl Rove and Ed Gillespie, spent $450,000 on the ad campaign, which will run until Tuesday. Since the November election, the group has spent nearly $1 million on ads, including $400,000 when Congress was debating tax cuts in December and $90,000 on more radio ads earlier this month.”


Bloomberg: “Koch Industries Inc. and its employees and subsidiaries spent $1.2 million in the last election helping to elect Republican governors who are now trying to take away bargaining rights of state workers. … The $1.2 million in Koch support for Republican governors includes $1.1 million given to the Republican Governors Association, which spent more than $3.4 million in support of Walker … In addition, Americans for Prosperity spent $1.2 million in support of Republican candidates for Congress last year, Federal Election Commission records show. Koch Industries’ federal political action committee contributed $1.3 million to candidates for the 2010 elections, 90 percent of it to Republicans, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.”


Washington Post: “A group of more than a hundred law professors from across the country has asked Congress to extend an ethical code of conduct to the Supreme Court – for the first time – and clarify when individual justices should step away from specific legal cases. … The group’s appeal on Wednesday, in a letter to the House and Senate Judiciary committees, comes after recent controversies involving travel and appearances at political events by several Supreme Court justices, including Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia. Rep. Christopher S. Murphy (D-Conn.) said he plans to introduce legislation that addresses the issue.”


–Today’s the big day for Sen. Tom Harkin’s Lady Gaga fundraiser! Lobbyists will come presented to the senator in golden eggs from which they will hatch. Charcuterie-inspired couture is also permissible.

–In less link-baiting news, Rep. Brad Sherman is hosting a fundraiser the at home of Brenda and Dale Surowitz.