March 27, 2012

VIDEO: Asked About a Lifetime Lobbying Ban for Members of Congress, Lawmakers Flee Republic Report

An interesting idea has emerged from lawmakers from both sides of the political spectrum: why not ban members of Congress from becoming K Street lobbyists? In Canada, senior lawmakers and government officials face a five year lobbying ban. In America, the “cooling off” period is only one year for congressmen and two years for senators — and there are dozens of loopholes that allow lawmakers to win multimillion dollar salaries from lobbying groups with no waiting period at all. [See our report on revolving door paydays here.]

Lawmakers will sometimes make policy in the hopes of winning jobs on K Street after they retire. Former Congressman Billy Tauzin (R-LA) secured billions for the drug industry shortly before becoming a pharmaceutical industry lobbyist. So far, Congressmen Scott Rigell (R-VA) and Dave Loebsack (D-IA) have stepped up to the plate, calling for a lifetime ban on lobbying.

We decided to head to Capitol Hill and find out if other lawmakers would join the cause. We spoke to Congressmen Jon Runyan (NJ), Mike Kelly (PA), Paul Broun (GA), and Todd Akin (MO). Watch the video here: