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Politicians live it up and have the lobbyists pay

phlatsphilphlatsphil Posts: 14,632 AG
r.e. my comments in another thread, we ARE A CORRUPT NATION.

eNuff said.....

Politicians live it up and have the lobbyists pay

Laguna Beach, California (CNN) -- On any given weekend, lobbyists in Washington head for the airport to jet off to luxurious locations across the country.

Destinations include Napa Valley in California for wine tasting, Wyoming for fly fishing and any number of spas, golf courses, even exclusive hunting trips.

They are invited to these weekend retreats by members of Congress and their political action committees.
The cost of accepting the invite is a political donation of anywhere from $1,500 to $5,000. And that doesn't include the cost of travel and lodging at some of the most posh resorts in the United States.

Why go? Lobbyists tell CNN there is no better access to a member of Congress and his or her top staff than spending a relaxing weekend with them, away from Capitol Hill.

It used to be that lobbyists would take politicians on trips, but when rules were changed and that was outlawed, politicians and their fund-raisers came up with this variation -- organize the trips and invite the lobbyists along to pay for them.

This past August, CNN followed U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-California, to a lush weekend retreat at the Montage Laguna Beach resort. The weekend was capped off by a seaside cocktail party hosted by the congressman as the sun set over the Pacific.

In early September, U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Maryland, hosted a golf weekend at the Inn at Perry Cabin, a posh resort on the banks of Chesapeake Bay. A Friday night terrace cocktail party included a special appearance by fellow Maryland lawmaker U.S. Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Maryland, who was one of the first on the links the next morning.
Both Cardin and Hunter declined interview requests.

Hunter's aide told us: "The congressman holds events of all types in many different venues and either people choose to support him or they don't, simple as that."



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