Lobbyists are everywhere. Say it isn’t so.
Barack Obama has almost guranteed a White House and government free of the pervasive influence of lobbyists and totally “transparent” to allow open knowledge, debate and decision making.
But lobbyists are all over the economic stimulus planning and to make sure they get what they want the process has become even more secretive….
By JULIE HIRSCHFELD DAVIS, Associated Press
President Barack Obama‘s ban on earmarks in the $825 billion economic stimulus bill doesn’t mean interest groups, lobbyists and lawmakers won’t be able to funnel money to pet projects.
They’re just working around it — and perhaps inadvertently making the process more secretive.
The projects run the gamut: a Metrolink station that needs building in Placentia, Calif.; a stretch of beach in Sandy Hook, N.J., that could really use some more sand; a water park in Miami.
There are thousands of projects like those that once would have been gotten money upfront but now are left to scramble for dollars at the back end of the process as “ready to go” jobs eligible for the stimulus plan.