The pantsuit revolutionary is at it again. Once again demonstrating her populist chops by employing the services of lobbyists to bundle millions in campaign funds. It’s no wonder opinion polls on her have been plunging as of late.
We learn from Bloomberg that:
When Barack Obama was running for the presidency in 2008—and later for reelection in 2012—he promised he wouldn’t take money from registered lobbyists, not even as bundlers. In the race to succeed him, Hillary Clinton is not following in his footsteps.
The former secretary of state raised more than $2 million from 40 “bundlers”—fundraisers who get their contacts to give to campaigns—who were also lobbyists, according to financial forms released Wednesday by the Federal Election Commission. In all, the Clinton campaign raised $46.7 million between the beginning of April and the end of June.
Clinton’s bundlers include some familiar names: Jerry Crawford, an outside lobbyist to Monsanto and Iowa kingmaker, put together another $35,000 or so. Tony Podesta, a mega-lobbyist who co-founded the Podesta Group and is the brother of Clinton’s campaign chair John, bundled almost $75,000.
Other bundlers lobby for big companies including Microsoft (Fred Humphries) and Exxon Mobil (Theresa Fariello) or industry groups including the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (Daphna Peled). Another group includes former staffers for prominent Democratic politicians (including President Clinton) and politicians themselves, including former South Carolina Governor Jim Hodges. Lobbyist bundlers don’t have to disclose their employers, but the names appear on both Clinton’s disclosures and 2015 lobbyist registrations.
She certainly knows how to diversify her portfolio when it comes to people who bribe U.S. Congress for a living.
Clinton was the only Democrat running for president to have declared lobbyist bundlers as of Thursday. Two Republicans candidates, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush and Florida Senator Marco Rubio, also filed disclosures on lobbyist bundlers, with Bush raising more than $228,000 from eight lobbyist bundlers and Rubio raising more than $133,000 from three lobbyist bundlers.
Lobbyist participation in a campaign can be hard to avoid: Despite President Obama’s promise, the New York Times found in 2011 that at least 15 of his bundlers had strong links to lobbyists, including “overseeing” them, even if they weren’t registered themselves.
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