DOUBLE-DIGIT GROWTH

The number of lobbyists in Washington has more than doubled in five years, even as the number of Senators and Congresspersons has held steady: 535.

Business has learned that in an all-rightwing government, lobbyists are a great return on investment.

As Bill Moyers recently wrote, ‘Once upon a time the House of Representatives was known as ‘the people’s house.’ No more. It belongs to K Street now. That’s the address of the lobbyists who swarm all over Capitol Hill. There are 65 lobbyists for every member of Congress. They spend $200 million per month wining, dining and seducing federal officials. Per month!’

THIS – FROM THE REPUBLICAN *LEADERSHIP*

According to Editor & Publisher Saturday:

Democrat Michael Arcuri is vying with Republican, Ray Meier, to replace longtime GOP Rep. Sherwood Boehlert, who is retiring. The race is very close and may help decide if the Democrats take the House.

The national GOP campaign office started airing an ad Friday that showed Arcuri leering at the silhouette of a dancing woman who says, ”Hi, sexy. You’ve reached the live, one-on-one fantasy line.” He supposedly dialed the service two years ago from a New York City hotel room and billed taxpayers – for all of $1.25 for a one-minute call. He is the district attorney in Oneida County.

Now the Utica Observer-Dispatch today notes that Arcuri’s campaign has released records to the paper showing the call to the 800 sex line was followed the very next minute by a call to the state Department of Criminal Justice Services – and the last seven digits of the two numbers are the same.

Arcuri now says the ad was ”clearly libelous” and threatens to file a lawsuit. At least seven television stations in Syracuse, Utica and Binghamton refused to run the ad.

The ad’s sponsor, the National Republican Congressional Committee, stands by the 30-second message.

☞ Think about this. This isn’t some nutty Swift Boat group they can pretend to disavow. This is the National Republican Congressional Committee. And when called on it, they are sticking to it. Dwight Eisenhower and Barry Goldwater must be rolling over in their graves.

POLITCAL SITES

Don’t bet on tradesports.com, but it’s an interesting take on the odds in various political races, and has proven quite accurate in predicting outcomes.

Right now, electoral-vote.com has the Senate exactly tied, so if you have any dollars to send to Claire McCaskill in Missouri, Harold Ford, Jr. in Tennessee, or Jim Webb in Virginia, it could be money well contributed.

You can see your political zip code here.

And you can get to one of the sites a lot of us have recently discovered, realclearpolitics, here.

Or, if you’re a real political junkie, you’ve doubtless signed up to have ABC’s The Note delivered to you every day.

Won’t you be glad when this is over 16 days from now? I can hardly wait.


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