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No public tours, but 344 visits by lobbyists to the White House

Posted by on Sep. 18, 2013 at 5:52 AM
  • 16 Replies

By Luke Rosiak


Regular American citizens visiting the nation's capital lost access to the White House in March as President Obama eliminated public tours to make a point in his battle with House Republicans in the sequestration debate over cutting spending or raising taxes.

But hundreds of K Street lobbyists, including corporate advocates who are paid to influence policy on behalf of Fortune 500 giants, saw no change in their access to the chief executive and his senior aides, according to a Washington Examiner analysis of White House visitor logs and lobbying records.

The analysis found that 200 lobbyists met 344 times with White House officials at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. between March and May.

Among the lobbyists meeting with White House officials in the most recently available three-month period:

-- Mary Streett, a lobbyist for energy company Exelon who lobbies on preventing clean air and water restrictions that could harm the company's bottom line, met with officials in March.

-- Joshua Zive, who represents coal and energy companies, had a meeting at the White House in April.

-- Joanna Acocella, who lobbies for the Apollo Group, which owns the University of Phoenix, part of the for-profit college industry where schools' steep tuition and dubious training have led massive portions of students to default on their loans and which has faced a crackdown by the administration, met with Patrick Hidalgo, deputy director of the White House Business Council, as part of a large group in May.

-- Lobbyists for fellow for-profit college groups Drexel University and Career Education Corp. also had meetings at the White House, records suggest. Funded almost entirely by federally backed loans, for-profit schools are so lucrative that Apollo paid its president $25 million last year.

-- Roger R. Szemraj, who represents candy makers and other food interests, met with Doug McKalip, senior policy adviser for rural affairs, along with five other visitors. Cracking down on junk food in schools has been one of the first lady's signature campaigns.

-- Paul Carothers, who lobbies for YUM! Brands, which owns Taco Bell and Pizza Hut, met with the White House Domestic Policy Council's Julie Moreno. Alcohol lobbyists and others whose Images are not entirely aligned also had significant presences.

-- Arshi Siddiqui, who represents physicians, the movie industry, Siemens Corp., United Technologies Corp., UPS, and life insurers, met one-one-one with Obama economic adviser Jason Furman twice in April.

-- Kim K. Bayliss, a lobbyist for corporate telecommunications giants such as Nexus Communications, met with U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel, along with two others.

-- Someone with the name of Donna Crane met once with the president as part of a large group and a second time in a one-on-one with a special adviser in May. Donna Crane is a top lobbyist for NARAL, the pro-choice activist group.

-- Emily Heisig, who lobbies for the New England Council, a business coalition that wants to loosen immigration restrictions on highly skilled workers, met with the president March 20.

-- Labor leader Hasan Solomon of the machinists' union, was granted a meeting with special adviser to the president Stephanie Valencia. Union leaders connected to the AFL-CIO had a whopping 14 meetings with White House officials in the three-month period.

The White House normally releases visitors logs quarterly, but on the same day a court decision ruled that the White House can keep some visitor information secret this month, the administration released the month of May early in an apparent public relations move.

by on Sep. 18, 2013 at 5:52 AM
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Replies (1-10):
SherryBerry106
by on Sep. 18, 2013 at 7:51 AM
2 moms liked this

No, this is BS

Obama banned any influence by any lobbyist - I remember.

lylalane7275
by Silver Member on Sep. 18, 2013 at 8:58 AM
2 moms liked this

Exactly, wasn't that a campaign promise?


Quoting SherryBerry106:

No, this is BS

Obama banned any influence by any lobbyist - I remember.



sarahjz
by Bronze Member on Sep. 18, 2013 at 9:54 AM

Interesting, TFS.

SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Sep. 18, 2013 at 3:43 PM
4 moms liked this

A campaign fib - like the others - finger crossing behind the back required.


Quoting lylalane7275:

Exactly, wasn't that a campaign promise?


Quoting SherryBerry106:

No, this is BS

Obama banned any influence by any lobbyist - I remember.





garnet83
by Member on Sep. 18, 2013 at 4:40 PM
2 moms liked this

Meh. It's Obama's world. We're just in it (as far as he's concerned).

tooptimistic
by Bronze Member on Sep. 18, 2013 at 5:59 PM

Aren't lobbiest much more important than the American people?

PrimmednPunked
by Silver Member on Sep. 18, 2013 at 6:17 PM
2 moms liked this
Lobbyists need to go. They are useless and work against the common good.
susan115
by on Sep. 18, 2013 at 8:33 PM
1 mom liked this

When I read that I was amazed, he must be giving the Lamestream media something for not saying anything.  Imagine, if this had been a Republican doing this.  We would have heads rolling and hour long shows on how evil republicans are.

143myboys9496
by Gold Member on Sep. 18, 2013 at 8:43 PM
2 moms liked this

 Quite possbily an impeachment as well.

Quoting susan115:

When I read that I was amazed, he must be giving the Lamestream media something for not saying anything.  Imagine, if this had been a Republican doing this.  We would have heads rolling and hour long shows on how evil republicans are.

 

143myboys9496
by Gold Member on Sep. 18, 2013 at 8:46 PM
2 moms liked this

 Actually, it was transparency of gov't..not the same thing. big smile mini

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Quoting lylalane7275:

Exactly, wasn't that a campaign promise?

 

Quoting SherryBerry106:

No, this is BS

Obama banned any influence by any lobbyist - I remember.

 

 

 

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