"As the public boils with anger over millions of dollars in retention bonuses for American Insurance Group employees, financial interests quietly continue to woo lawmakers with fundraising parties this month.
Actually, I think that members are still wooing the financial industry by offering dinners, breakfasts and events geared to their industry. While members may be publicly throwing AIG under the bus, in private they're only too happy to cozy up with contributors, offering preferred access and insights in exchange for campaign cash.
One of the first rules of following Washington: Watch what they do, not what they say.
National ...Continue reading
Facing what looks like a tougher-than-expected reelection effort, Sen. Christopher Dodd has a fundraiser scheduled for tomorrow evening, March 18, at a location "TBD." (click the link to see the invite) Dodd is asking "hosts" to pony up $10,000 (PACs will be the hosts, and they'll be asked to give $5,000 for the primary and $5,000 for the general election, maxing out in March for an election twenty months away. To be a co-host, a PAC can contribute $5,000, while individuals can get in the door (which door?) for a mere $1,000 ...Continue reading
There’s nothing really new in this new study, but it reconfirms what we’ve known (and updates the figures for Congressional... View ArticleContinue reading
In today’s edition, Roll Call profiles how members of Congress increasingly pimping their top aides as a way to raise... View ArticleContinue reading
The Center for Responsive Politics (a Sunlight grantee) is displaying some cool new ways to view the role of money in the presidential election. Look here for the "Money Web." This shows you the links between candidates and donors, including the five top contributors and industries (including ties) to each of the candidates. Click on a bubble to start making connections among candidates, their top-giving industries and top contributors.
Here's a cool map that illustrates how much money is going to Republican and Democratic candidates from each state and which presidential candidate got the most.
If you want to see how a candidate's fundraising stacks up against another's week by week, or month by month, look here. On this map click on a state to see contributions from that state to each candidate, as well as money isolated by metropolitan area and top ZIP codes. (Note that the Web site is geteting some heavy traffic this afternoon. If you have trouble loading anything, try back later.)
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. Continue reading
Running names identified by the media as being part of Norman Hsu's network of donors through federal, state and even municipal campaign finance records, Suitably Flip offers the most comprehensive road map to following the money. Sadly, there's no way to be certain which of these contributions were truly bundled by Hsu, and which might have been independently. While the recently enacted Honest Leadership and Open Government Act of 2007 requires campaigns to identify bundled contributions totaling more than $15,000 from registered lobbyists, there's no provision requiring the same sort of disclosure about bundles from convicted felons, or anyone else for that matter.Continue reading