I’m pretty sure political lobbying is evil.

scary article excerpts (original publication here):

“…several Republican and Democratic presidential campaign officials whose lobbying firms have been paid more than $15 million by foreign governments since 2005…”

The firms of McCain senior adviser Charlie Black, who until recently was the chairman of Washington-based BKSH & Associates, and campaign co-chairman Thomas G. Loeffler, who heads the Loeffler Group in San Antonio, received millions of dollars lobbying the White House, Congress and others as agents of nearly a dozen foreign clients in recent years.

“At no time have I discussed my clients with John McCain, and there have been many occasions where he has voted against my clients’ interests, but that doesn’t change my belief that John McCain is the best candidate to lead our nation,” said Mr. Loeffler, a former Texas congressman, whose firm has received millions of dollars from Saudi Arabia.

The arrangements are legal, and hundreds of lobbyists are registered to work for foreign clients. But experts say conflict-of-interest questions can arise if lobbying and campaign activities overlap.

“I’m not sure it’s a good idea that one person plays all these roles,” said Toni-Michelle C. Travis, a political analyst and professor of government at George Mason University. “The entanglements become greater and greater, and that can lead to conflict-of-interest questions at some point.”

“…Mark Penn, former top strategist to Democratic candidate Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, recently resigned after consulting on a Colombian trade agreement that Mrs. Clinton opposed. Mr. Penn is chief executive of Washington-based Burson-Marsteller, which has lobbied for the Pakistan Peoples Party, the Colombian Embassy and the Mexico Tourism Board.

In addition, the Glover Park Group where top Clinton adviser Howard Wolfson previously worked, received more than $170,00 last year from the Colombian trade bureau and $250,000 from Dubai Aerospace Enterprises Ltd.”

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