Sunrise (3/2/11)



Hollywood Reporter: “Former Democrat Senator Christopher Dodd has been named chairman and CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America, ending a long search for a leader for the movie and TV industries’ primary lobbying group and trade association. … While Dodd does not have a lot of experience in Hollywood, he is known to have many friends in show business, and has supported the MPAA on key trade, piracy and other issues. He was also author of banking law last year that included a section sought by the MPAA and others to stop plans for a futures market in movies.”

Sunlight: “Despite vowing not to become a lobbyist after retiring from a long Senate career Chris Dodd officially became Hollywood’s top lobbyist in Washington yesterday. Senate revolving door issues place certain restrictions on Dodd as he moves ahead in lobbying for the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA). These rules, however, do allow Dodd to lobby certain parts of the government that are essential for the MPAA’s major issues. … Senate revolving door rules restrict Dodd from lobbying his former colleagues in the Senate. This rule, however, does not apply to the executive branch or the House of Representatives. The language from the Senate Rules states that any former senator registered as a lobbyist or working for an organization employing registered lobbyists “shall not lobby Members, officers, or employees of the Senate for a period of two years after leaving office.”


NYT: “…[T]he Washington lobbyists for Arab nations find themselves in a precarious spot, as they try to stay a step ahead of the fast-changing events without being seen as aiding despots and dictators. In Libya, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Yemen, Egypt and other countries in the region, leaders have relied increasingly on Washington’s top lobbyists and lawyers, paying them tens of millions of dollars. Some consultants are tacking toward a more progressive stance in light of pro-democracy protests, while others are dropping their clients altogether because of the tumult. … In Tunisia, where the earliest revolts energized the regional upheaval in January, the Washington Media Group, a public relations and communications firm, ended its $420,000 image-building contract with Tunis on Jan. 6, soon after reports emerged of violent government crackdowns on demonstrators. … “We basically decided on principle that we couldn’t work for a country that was using snipers on rooftops to pick off its citizens,” said Gregory L. Vistica, the firm’s president, who first announced the decision on Facebook. … Others have stayed the course, at least for now. Mr. Moffett, Mr. Livingston and Mr. Podesta, who have a joint, multimillion-dollar contract with Egypt, have stepped up the pace of their meetings and phone conferences with Egyptian Embassy officials after the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak. One of the chief aims, the lobbyists say, is to help the military officials now running the country move toward elections that will be regarded as free and fair outside Egypt.”


HuffPo: “Wall Street banks are deploying little-known lobbying organizations who represent companies like Pizza Hut and Radio Shack in a new push to hamstring the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. It’s a tactic that bankers used repeatedly during last year’s legislative debate over financial reform– by rolling out airlines and butchers to warn about regulation, megabanks could lobby against the overhaul without tainting the public relations effort with their own unpopular brands. But now, for the first time, banks are using obscure lobby groups in order to team up with payday lenders, check-cashing agencies and other financial firms that target the poor– and presenting the blitz as the work of a broad, non-financial business coalition.”


–All fundraisers held today can be found here.


Day in Transparency (3/1/11)

Day in Sunlight (3/1/11)