April 3, 2012

Koch Lobbyist Helps Fund Obama’s SuperPAC

President Obama ran for office on a pledge to refuse donations from lobbyists and to clean up the outside industry money that continually pollutes American elections. Obama’s recent decision to embrace Super PACs undercuts both promises. That is because Super PACs can collect unlimited corporate and lobbyist contributions. And donations to Obama’s preferred Super PAC, Priorities USA, might already cause problems for the President’s campaign and his once-strong reformer image.

There have been previous reports that suggest Obama’s Super PAC donations will influence his behavior. As we noted, on the heel of this decision, Obama’s campaign manager met privately with hedge fund managers to promise that Obama would not demonize Wall Street or wage a populist campaign.

But a closer look at Obama’s Super PAC reveals that the reversal may have other immediate political ramifications. While the Obama campaign has targeted the Koch brothers for their secretive efforts to manipulate the election this year, it appears a Koch lobbyist is helping to fund Obama’s Super PAC. According to disclosures filed with the FEC, David Castagnetti, a high powered Democratic lobbyist who is on retainer to lobby for Koch Industries, donated $5,000 to Priorities USA:

This donation doesn’t suggest that somehow the Obama administration is already in bed with the Koch brothers. But it goes to show that the decision to welcome lobbyist cash comes with ugly associations. And it underscores a greater problem: as lobbyists donate more and more to Obama, it becomes harder for Obama to make the case that he’s on the side of clean government.

Unless we’re willing to challenge the broken system in Washington, and stop letting lobbyists use their clout to get their way, nothing else is going to change.

  • There are options for citizens who are disgusted by the influence that big money has on our policies and our politicians. We can start at any level of our government, too – federal, state, and local. CleanSlateNow.org is supporting candidates who turn down special interest campaign contributions in their own campaigns. On that website is a list of those courageous candidates. Go there and send them an email telling them that you appreciate what they are doing. Change starts with us, and we can use the power of our vote to send a message that we will only support candidates who agree to turn down that legal bribe money.

  • In his 2008 campaign, Obama received large donations from Goldman and BP. He appointed Tim Geithner and was soft on BP over the oil spill. The thing is, it has always been wise for those financing government to give the bribe moneys to both sides in a political war. The borrower is servant to the lender. Or, as Amschel Rothschild once said, “Give me control of a nation’s money
    and I care not who makes the laws.” I do have hope that Obama will bite the hands that feed him in a second term. If not, Teddy Roosevelt won’t be coming to our rescue. Also, this donation from the Kochs cuts both ways: Don’t they risk the censure of the right for helping finance the “Antichrist?”

    • CatKinNY

      It’s not a contribution from the Kochs; it’s a contribution from a lobbyist who works for Koch Industries but happens to be a democrat. All this article shows is that this individual, David Castagnetti, doesn’t believe in the agenda he spends his professional life pushing; I’m sure he’s very well paid for his hypocracy. I think the actual point of this piece was to print the guys address, in the hopes that a reader in the DC area will use it to make his life unpleasant. Hopefully, no psychos will act on the info.

  • Lindae1946

    Penny Pritzker was Obama’s campaign finance manager for his 2008 election. Her whole family is tied in heavily to Wall St. through real estate! To whom do you think he owes his loyalty–to the American 99%–not hardly! He talks about reigning in Wall St. to Americans, while “winking”, at Wall St. Anything he has said in his speeches against the 1-2%, has been strictly to gain back support from those who have left his ideologies in the dust, and continue to see that he is just a, “suit”, for Wall St. and the Big banks!!! When he is re-elected, he will be a lame duck president–nothing, will change!! When Obama was elected, we had the 3 branches of govt, under Democratic leadership–or so many believed, and nothing major was accomplished! In 2010, when the Repubs won the majority, the Dems were all blaming them for nothing getting done–you can’t have it both ways.

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