Saturday, June 12, 2010

Larson Lies Down With Fleas, Gets Up With Dog

It’s not all that unusual for leading politicians to bump up lobbyists, the vanguard of Wall Street, for campaign cash, but the latest romance between Larson and the enemies of Main Street has a new twist to it.

Larson, a close student of the late U.S. Rep. John Murtha, widely regarded as the earmark king, now wants the titans of industry to pony up money AND “Messaging and campaign strategy,” according to the Roll Call report.

“But the decision to formally assign lobbyists to lawmakers is unusual, according to several Democratic lobbyists.

“’It was not just a fundraising ask,’ according to a lobbyist in attendance. ‘It was also to help out with campaign.’

“They said, ‘These people could use extra help, not only in terms of resources, but also advice in terms of setting up ground messaging,’ the lobbyist added.

“They basically asked us to adopt a Member,’ according to another lobbyist at the dinner, who declined to speak on the record…

“The ask was formalized Wednesday evening at a dinner at Acqua Al 2, an Italian restaurant on Capitol Hill, organized by Jennifer Crider, political director for Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and deputy executive director at the DCCC [Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee].

“The effort is being driven by Pelosi loyalists, such as Democratic bundlers Tony Podesta of the Podesta Group, Ben Barnes of the Barnes Group, Steve Elmendorf of Elmendorf Strategies and Brian Wolff, a former DCCC executive director who is now a lobbyist at the Edison Electric Institute. That’s a notable development considering Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) is the Caucus’ point man when it comes to fundraising from the downtown business community.”

Wall Street, virulently denounced by President Barack Obama, will not only be in your Democratic Congressman’s pocket should the alliance bear fruit; they will be in your congressman’ brains -- running their campaigns.

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