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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Potholes for the Straight Talk Express

Why did the lobbyist join the campaign?

No it's not another chicken joke, but a good question as yet another aide to John McCain bails out because of his ties to lobbyists.

Lobbyists join campaign so they can be in a position to win friends and influence people. That's their job. Raising large chunks of cash through lobbyists money is all part of the influence peddling process.

It's more than ironic that McCain is staffed up with so many lobbyists in high places considering his entire candidacy is based on the premise that he learned his lessons from his Keating Five days -- when a top Arizona banker bought five congressmen.

It's all the more reason to laugh hysterically when McCain tries to declare that mentioning the Keating Five would be dirty campaigning.

Barack Obama continues to raise campaign cash hand over fist -- despite the dire warnings that the extended campaign has exposed fatal weaknesses. And Obama continues to do it in a way McCain is not -- through small donations from people who never used to give.

That's a fundamental difference that will loom large -- and will prompt McCain to try and fall back on a publicly funded campaign that limits spending. But it will be for strategic reasons, not "straight talk" principle.

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