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NYT Story: Obama White House in Engaging in Quid Pro Quo, Trading Access for Money


The New York Times reports that

…Although Mr. Obama has made a point of not accepting contributions from registered lobbyists, a review of campaign donations and White House visitor logs shows that special interests have had little trouble making themselves heard. Many of the president’s biggest donors, while not lobbyists, took lobbyists with them to the White House, while others performed essentially the same function on their visits…

…Among donors who gave $30,000 or less, about 20 percent visited theWhite House, according to a New York Times analysis that matched names in the visitor logs with donor records. But among those who donated $100,000 or more, the figure rises to about 75 percent. Approximately two-thirds of the president’s top fund-raisers in the 2008 campaign visited the White House at least once, some of them numerous times…

…But the regular appearance of big donors inside the White Houseunderscores how political contributions continue to lubricate many of the interactions between officials and their guests, if for no other reason than that donors view the money as useful for getting a foot in the door….

…Some of the donors had no previous record of giving to the president or his party, or of making donations of such magnitude, so their gifts, sometimes given in close proximity to meetings, raise questions about whether they came with expectations of access or were expressions of gratitude….

…Patrick J. Kennedy, the former representative from Rhode Island, who donated $35,800 to an Obama re-election fund last fall while seeking administration support for a nonprofit venture, said contributions were simply a part of “how this business works.”

If you want to call it ‘quid pro quo,’ fine,” (former USRepresentative Patrick Kennedy (Democrat-RI)) said. “At the end of the day, I want to make sure I do my part.”…

Although the NYT is at times a questionable source, you’ll find in reading the entire article extensive research and analysis of data and several telling anecdotal stories, all of which reinforce the central claim of the story- that the Obama administration is engaging on an increased level in quid pro quo corruption where people trade campaign donations in exchange for access and policy decisions in their favor.

This story is especially damaging because the greatest reason for voting for Senator Obama in 2008 was that he was going to change the way that things work in Washington and do the exact opposite of what is detailed in the above story.Candidate Obama promised that under him, with his meager history of ethics reforms and rhetoric of change and hope and equality, anyone could talk to him and have access to him and that policy decisions would be made for the good of the nation and not by special interests.

Instead, it is clear that that not only is the Obama White House more of the same, but it has gotten even worse, and it is clear to everyone that the way to get policies enacted in our nation through an increasingly autocratic White House is to givePresident Obama his money, to pay up the bribe to get your policies enacted, and to engage systematically in the sort of corruption that- while quite common in the Chicago machine that Obama comes from- should not be tolerated at the national level.

President Nixon was viewed as a crook for engaging in this sort of behavior and it was a major scandal that President Clinton was auctioning off rooms in the White Houseto the highest campaign supporter- and it is a major scandal and proof that Obama is a crook that two-thirds of the president’s top fund-raisers in the 2008 campaign visited the White House at least once to discuss policy and secure for themselves or their friends political favors and advantages.

President Obama promised to change Washington for the better. Instead he has changed it for the worse. It’s time for America to change Presidents in 2012.

More coverage here over at memeorandum.

Original Post: A Conservative Teacher

  • Paying cash just to visit Obama? I’d pay good money to to make him go away!

  • The only change that Obama has brought is a change in the level of corruption and it isn’t in the direction he promised. This is exactly what he promised to end and yet he has increased it. Why isn’t this a major scandal?