Daily Revolt

December 30, 2007

No lobbyists in White House, Edwards Vows

I have my doubts if he would keep his promise. There is some question whether he is being totally honest on the issue. He is particularly hypocritical on the question of the trial lawyers, their lobbyists are big supporters of his campaign:
Democrat John Edwards vowed Saturday that no one who has lobbied for corporations or foreign governments would work in the White House if he is elected.

Edwards made the promise before a couple of hundred people jammed into a library meeting room here, then expounded on it with reporters.

"For almost 10 years of being in public life, I've never taken money from a Washington lobbyist or a special interest PAC, and I want to continue that commitment by pledging to the American people that when I'm president of the United States that corporate lobbyists or anyone who has lobbied for a foreign government will not be permitted to work in my White House," he said. "This is a continuation of my belief that we need to reduce the influence of these special interests and lobbyists, which I've believed my entire time in public life."

Barack Obama made the same vow on Meet The Press, shown today. I doubt think either candidate would have the ability to bring down such a powerful establishment, no matter how hard they would try. They are still Democrats, after all:
Edwards challenged his rivals to join his pledge. "I think it would be a great thing for America if the other Democrats would commit to the same thing," he said.

Earlier in the day, campaign officials for rival candidate Hillary Clinton told reporters that Edwards was being hypocritical because one of his biggest fundraisers is a lobbyist who has represented the oil industry.

Edwards acknowledged knowing the man, Scott Tyre of Wisconsin. "Scott Tyre is a friend of mine and a supporter of mine," he said. He added that his campaign checks all donations against a list of registered federal lobbyists, and returns any money from them.

An Edwards aide later said Tyre is not a federal lobbyist but may lobby in Wisconsin. The aide, Mark Kornblau, said state lobbyists are not prohibited from contributing to the campaign because they would not lobby the White House. However, the Web site for Tyre's firm, Capitol Navigators, describes it as "a full-service public affairs firm delivering the very best in lobbying and grassroots services at the state and federal levels."

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