February 10, 2012

Romney’s $1 Million Haul Raised With Help From TSA Scanner Company Lobbyist, K-12 Privatization Politician

Romney's  Million Haul Raised With Help From TSA Scanner Company Lobbyist, K-12 Privatization PoliticianLast night, Mitt Romney’s campaign raised an estimated $1 million from a “policy” fundraiser in Washington DC. Attendees paid at least $10,000 each to hobnob with the men and women helping to write Romney’s policy plans (view an invitation here).

The behind closed doors event has been assailed by the press already for featuring a number of corporate lobbyists. The Republic Report has identified three advisors that have worked to promote some of the most insidious forms of crony capitalism in recent years:

Romney Security Policy Advisor Michael Chertoff Has Called For More TSA Body Scanners, Lobbies For Scanner Machine Manufacturers. For years, Chertoff has called for stricter TSA policies, including pat-downs and increased use of scanner. However, reports revealed recently that Chertoff, since leaving the Bush administration, has worked for several body scanner companies.

Romney Education Policy Advisor Tom Luna Has Pushed Aggressively To Hand K-12 Education To For-Profit Online Education Companies. As Idaho’s Education Superintendent, Luna is renowned for his aggressive push towards privatizing elementary through high school education through virtual school. Luna’s relationship with for-profit online school companies has been well-documented.

Romney Education Policy Advisor Bill Hansen Has Pushed To Direct Billions In Taxpayer Money To For-Profit, Low Quality Higher Education Companies. As Republic Report’s David Halperin noted earlier this week, Hansen was a key figure in the Bush administration who authorized billions in taxpayer money to for-profit higher education companies. Despite low graduation rates, high debt, and low quality education, these policies have largely remained in tact.

As Chris Frates reports for the National Journal, the fundraiser invitation left off other key Romney policy leaders, including chief drug industry lobbyist John Castellani and Mike Tuffin, vice president of the health insurance industry lobbying federation AHIP.