Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Lobbying Reform Takes Center Stage

It only takes a scandal ... the House and Senate, and both parties within each house, continue to scramble madly in an attempt to outdo each other on the leve of "lobby reform" they want to push for. Just six months or a year ago, this kind of thing would have been not only unimaginable, but only impossible to get through Congress; as McCain quipped yesterday, "It proves that if you live long enough, anything can happen."

We'll see where all these proposals go. They all are going to sound great at first as their proponents shout them from the rooftops, but analysis will have to be done to make sure they don't contain Abramoff-sized loopholes that will render them about as effective as a time-clock in front a bloviating Judiciary Committee member (pick your favorite). As Jeff Birnbaum reports in today's WaPo, the House's version released yesterday does contain a major loophole which must be remedied.

Let's get these reforms done, but let's get them done the right way. The current mad rush to pass "something, anything" is not the best way to go.


At 1:05 PM, Anonymous Paul Wartenberg said...

The buzz on other poli blogs is that the GOP reform package has loopholes aplenty, rather than that one truck-sized loophole you mentioned. Might want to take a look at the fine print on all the proposals.

Also note, anything offered up at the beginning is going to be weighed down at the end by riders/attachments/usual junk that the sneakier corrupt congressmen add to any and all bills they can...

Not to mention the 'signing statement' Bush can make to exclude himself from the 'reforms'...


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