Surprisingly, Corporate Lobbyists Don't Like Bernie Sanders' Plan to Limit Corporate Lobbying


Vermont Sen. and presidential candidate Bernie Sanders launched a proposal to curb corporate lobbying on Monday, drawing criticism from none other than… corporate lobbyists.

Sanders’ plan would prohibit corporate donations to the Democratic National Committee and ban current and former National Party Chairs from lobbying. The plan would also completely overhaul the election system and make it so that no former members of Congress or senior staffers would lobby.

So people spoke to the Hill on Monday to proudly explain that actually, the fact that they have been able to cash in on the complete power that corporations hold over the U.S. government, is good.

The Hill made the hilarious decision to grant anonymity to a brave Republican lobbyist who promised that any ban would be insufficient.

“Money is like water. It finds its way. If people want to figure out ways to contribute, they’ll figure out a loophole,” this lobbyist said.

How very Jurassic Park.

I think that he’s saying that water will leak into sealed places? But it’s been raining all day here in Maine, and it makes me wonder: does this unnamed lobbyist have a leaky roof? My apartment fortunately stays dry during the rain, which I think is the same general idea as a ban on corporate funding. Nobody who has a leaky roof says that their house was built correctly. Sorry, I also need to know, has this guy ever been in a boat?

Usually sources are granted anonymity because the quote can cost them their job or safety. For some reason I feel like if this guy got named saying he doesn’t care about lobbying regulations it would… help his career?

Stewart Verdery, CEO of public affairs firm Monument Advocacy, told the Hill that “on the substance side, hosting a convention is a major endeavor that can strap the budgets of parties and cities–the money has to come from somewhere and cutting off corporate donations may further depress interest in hosting a convention.”

Guess he didn’t bother to look at the proposal. It very clearly states that Sanders’ plan is to (emphasis mine): “Update and strengthen the Federal Election Campaign Act to return to a system of mandatory public funding for National Party Conventions.”

Verdery added: “On the image side, the Democrats always have to balance their populist rhetoric with quieter outreach to the business community–telling companies who would like to partner with the party to take their ball and go home will easily feed into an anti-capitalist motif.”

I love this idea of an anti-capitalist motif. How lovely. How simply rejuvenating.

Clients at Verdery’s firm, as I’m sure some may have guessed already, include Amazon, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers (D.C.’s top pharmaceutical lobby), J.P. Morgan Chase, Shell, and the Walton Family Foundation (the Walmart family’s “charity.”)

Josh Orton, Sanders’s national policy director, said in a statement: “Bernie Sanders is building an unprecedented grassroots campaign to end corruption, and as a nominee would host a grassroots conventions for delegates, party members, teachers, workers, nurses, farmers, and students—corporate lobbyists will never buy influence with Bernie, period.”

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