Organizing for Action, which has pledged not to take money from lobbyists and says on their website that they will not engage in lobbying, has registered as a lobbying group in New York state, according to public records.
Shadow lobbyists and ex-lobbyists were big donors to President Barack Obama’s inaugural committee despite claims his administration shuns lobbyists, according to the Sunlight Foundation.
As fears of another recession mount amidst the fiscal cliff talks, lobbyists are cashing in. “Lobbyists generally do pretty well if there’s policy uncertainty,” said Lee Drutman, a senior fellow at the Sunlight Foundation, a government accountability and transparency watchdog group.
The implication that lobbyists have seen their influence wane under President Barack Obama is belied by the facts.
A former Obama adviser has rejoined a green energy advocacy group as a vice president, raising questions about the propriety of a former White House official working to influence the White House, according to reports.
White House officials prefer to rendezvous with lobbyists and big business insiders off campus in order to avoid disclosure, according to e-mails made public by House Republicans.
Despite President Obama’s promises to bring a new political culture to Washington by restricting lobbyist access to the executive branch, lobbyists are still a regular presence at the White House.
President Obama swept into office pledging to reform Washington’s lobbyist culture, but White House officials meet weekly with interest groups in “dialogues” and briefings that skirt the definition of lobbying.
President Obama’s ban on lobbyist contributions has not prevented lobbyists and other representatives of special interests from visiting the White House frequently, a New York Times review of public documents reveals.
The lobbying industry’s favorite senator has turned Big Bank protections into a flood of campaign cash. Sen. Jon Tester (D., Mont.) received nearly $300,000 from lobbyists in 2012, making him the top recipient of K Street dollars, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.