[Guest post by DRJ]
As a candidate, Barack Obama rejected contributions from registered lobbyists because he wanted to maintain an identity as a Washington outsider immune from special interests. However, behind the scenes, Obama welcomed support from lobbyists’ family, clients, affiliates and friends, as well as in kind donations of policy and campaign support.
That support is paying off for legions of lobbyists. During the 1st Quarter of 2010, D.C. lobbyists averaged $19M a day in earnings for each day Congress was in session:
“Hordes of hired K Street guns are in high demand as President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats seek to implement grand legislative plans.
And a Center for Responsive Politics review of lobbying reports recently filed with the Senate Office of Public Records indicates companies, trade associations, unions and other groups spent nearly $1 billion on lobbying during the first three months of 2010. That puts the current year on an early pace toward exceeding the record amount of money — about $3.47 billion — spent last year on federal lobbying efforts.
The $903 million spent between January 1 and March 31 is larger than overall lobbying expenses in three out of four quarters last year, and it represents an 11 percent increase from the $811 million spent on lobbying during the first three months of 2009.
Special interests spent about $19 million per day on lobbying efforts, the Center for Responsive Politics estimates, based on the number of calendar days that either the House or Senate was officially in session.”
And that doesn’t even touch the mockery Obama has made of his promise to ban lobbyists from working in his administration.