March 15, 2012

Republic Report Sends Letter To 36 Retiring Members of Congress: Stop Backdoor Bribery, Disclose Your Job Negotiations With K Street

Is your member of Congress serving you, or serving himself? Many lawmakers, when they approach retirement, begin negotiating with lobbying firms to receive multimillion dollar salaries after they leave office. In some cases, a Senator or Representative will slip language into a bill or write an earmark that benefits a special interest, and when they leave Congress, a big paycheck is waiting for them from the very same company.

While the process of public officials going to work for lobbying firms is often called the “revolving door,” we think this issue deserves more emphasis and urgency. With members of Congress secretly manipulating the laws we must all live under, and then receiving lavish rewards, so they can live lavish lifestyles, we call that Backdoor Bribery.

Yesterday, we published a report detailing the problem, and revealed that the lawmakers-turned-lobbyists we profiled received up to a 1,452 percent raise on average. Congressman Billy Tauzin (R-LA), for instance, made $158,100 as a lawmaker his last year in office. He went on to make nearly $20 million the next few years as a drug company lobbyist — after he wrote the law in Congress that prevents Medicare from negotiating for lower drug prices for seniors (a rule that costs taxpayers billions). And Backdoor Bribery occurs on both sides of the aisle. It was reported earlier this year that Congressman Bill Delahunt (D-MA) earmarked hundreds of thousands of dollars in special projects before retiring, then began a lobbying job that counts his earmark recipients as clients.

Members of Congress owe their loyalty to the people they represent, not to big companies offering them future riches. We need to stand up against this abuse of our democracy.

Today, the editors of Republic Report are sending a letter to the 36 members of Congress who have already announced they are retiring this year, asking them to at a minimum disclose to the public if they are currently negotiating with a private interest for a future job. They should make such discussions available on their congressional website, if they are still writing the laws we live under. Take a look at a sample copy of our letter:

[scribd id=85401356 key=key-1nbkzr5fgw9ky83g0d7w mode=list]
Are current members of Congress already engaging in Backdoor Bribery? If you have a tip, let us know at [email protected]

Update: Republic Report’s David Halperin explains the existing ethics rules and why were are asking for better disclosure here.

Update 2: Congressman Dale Kildee (D-MI) responded to our campaign; Congresswoman Jean Schmidt (R-OH) refused to address the issue, won’t comment on if she is negotiating to become a lobbyist. Watch the video here; Congressman Brad Miller (D-NC) endorsed our idea — see the video here.

Click more to for a list of the retiring lawmakers and their response to our letter:


Joe Lieberman (I)
(202) 224-4041
STATUS: Lieberman’s office has rejected our request. His spokesperson told us: “In response to the request of publishing the Senator’s future plan on our website; we have no plans to do so at the moment, as the Senator is not yet in negotiations for his next career move. He has however, stated publicly on numerous occasions that he will not enter into the lobbying industry.” Notably, Lieberman was honored recently by “hundreds” of corporate lobbyists, and hinted that he admired their profession.

Ben Nelson (D)
(202) 224-6551
STATUS: Senator Nelson formally declined to sign our letter.

Daniel Akaka (D)
(202) 224-6361
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Jeff Bingaman (D)
(202) 224-5521
STATUS: Letter sent. Senator Bingaman’s office told Republic Report that they will get back to us soon.

Kent Conrad (D)
(202) 224-2043
STATUS: Letter sent. Senator Conrad’s press secretary says the office will get back with Republic Report soon.

Kay Bailey Hutchison (R)
(202) 224-5922
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Herb Kohl (D)
(202) 224-5653
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Jon Kyl (R)
(202) 224-4521
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Olympia Snowe (R)
(202) 224-5344
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Jim Webb (D)
(202) 224-4024
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.


Dale Kildee (D)
2107 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-3611
STATUS: Kildee’s staff received the letter and discussed it with the chief of staff. The congressman later told Republic Report that our request for transparent job negotiations should be the law, and that he would disclose his plans with anyone who asks. See the video here.

Jean Schmidt (R)
2464 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-3164
STATUS: Letter sent, no response. Republic Report caught up with Congresswoman Schmidt on Capitol Hill. The congresswoman refused to say if she will become a lobbyist, and had no comment on posting information about her future job negotiations. Watch the video here.

Brad Miller (D)
1127 Longworth House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-3032
STATUS: Letter sent. Republic Report spoke with Congressman Miller about the campaign, and he quickly endorsed the idea, telling us that although he does not plan to become a lobbyist, he will disclose any negotiations with lobbying firms on his website if he changes his mind. Miller explained that he requires his staff to disclose such negotiations to him privately, so he should be held to the same standard. Watch our interview here.

Jerry Lewis (R)
2112 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-5861
STATUS: Lewis’ office rejected our request. His spokesperson responded with a defiant tone: “At this point he’s really not discussing that…. He is not publicly discussing that.” Notably, Lewis’s aides have publicly advertised that their boss is seeking a job on K Street. Lewis remains a powerful player on the House Appropriations Committee, a seat that gives him wide leverage to distribute pork to special interests.

Heath Shuler (D)
229 Cannon House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-6401
STATUS: Letter sent, no response. As we’ve reported, Shuler is already negotiating to become a lobbyist, even as he positions himself to set major tax policy this year.

Barney Frank (D)
2252 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-5931
STATUS: Frank has refused our request. Speaking to Republic Report’s Zaid Jilani, Frank compared our request for simple disclosure to Grover Norquist’s anti-tax pledge. Although Frank says he has no plans to become an influence peddler, DC publications are buzzing that Wall Street lobbying groups are heavily recruiting the Massachusetts lawmaker to become a lobbyist next year.

Steve Austria (R)
439 Cannon House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-4324
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Dan Boren (D)
2447 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-2701
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Dan Burton (R)
2308 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-2276
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Dennis Cardoza (D)
2437 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-6131
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Jerry Costello (D)
2408 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-5661
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Geoff Davis (R)
1119 Longworth House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-3465
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Norm Dicks (D)
2467 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-5916
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

David Dreier (R)
233 Cannon House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-2305
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Elton Gallegly (R)
2309 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-5811
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Charlie Gonzalez (D)
1436 Longworth House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-3236
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Wally Herger (R)
242 Cannon House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-3076
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Maurice Hinchey (D)
2431 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-6335
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Sue Myrick (R)
230 Cannon House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-1976
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

John Olver (D)
1111 Longworth House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-5335
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Todd Platts (R)
2455 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-5836
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Mike Ross (D)
2436 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-3772
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Lynn Woolsey (D)
2263 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-5161
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Dennis Kucinich (D)
2445 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-5871
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Gary Ackerman (D)
2211 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-2601
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

Don Manzullo (R)
2228 Rayburn House Office Building Washington DC 20510
(202) 225-5676
STATUS: Letter sent, no response.

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  • As far as i’m concerned, lobbying should be a felony! No different that trying to bribe a cop! I tried to add my name here but it was blocked for some reason. Complete reform of our congress and they way they do business is the only way, imo, to stop the legal crooks from continuing to steal from the american people. I want term limits for congress and surpreme court justices, maybe two 6 year terms with no retirement, and one 6 year term for president. It is time for change we can believe in!

    • LightShifter

      Riddle: What’s the difference between bribing a Police Officer and bribing a Politician?

      Answer: The Politician makes a lot more and doesn’t have to worry about going to jail for it.

      • jfloyd

        Goood one…funny but sadly true…& a good one to remember!…

    • Wingerone

      Fortunately or unfortunately, the Constitution maintains the right of the public to petition their elected representatives. Ooops, guess what, that includes lobbyists. Hence it cannot be criminalized. All the same, we should find a way to do something about it.

      I’m reminded of the Eddie Murphy movie, The Distinguished Gentleman.” A small time con man gets himself elected to Congress where he finds out he’s small fry, not even a small fish in a big pond, compared to what goes on in Congress. Many in Congress are among the biggest crooks around, second only to Wall St. If they could they’d hang out signs, “US Government for Sale.”

      • Jduu

        But it doesn’t give them the right to send a legislator to Scotland to play golf, or offer other bribes and largess, such as employment upon an elected official leaving office. The LAW does, but not the Constitution. Oh yes, Virginia, it can, and must be criminalized.

        • jfloyd

          what happened to the example set by George W???

      • Sgtkelso

        goggle 151 congressmen invested in the wars, blood money, they vote for the war and then invest heavily in them, read a good book, The Greedy Bastards by Dylan Ratigan of MSNBC

        • jfloyd

          Dylan Ratigan is one of the clearest & most direct heads on MSNBC…

        • Jacksquat

          I got news for you all. They are doing the same thing with alternative energy. Thats why there is resistance to nuclear, coal, oil energy sources in this country, so the powerful can monopolize alternative energy, and the enviromentalists are playing into their hand.

          • CatKinNY

            While you may deny global warming, and a lot of money has been spent by the Koch brothers, et al, to convince you that there is a lack of consensus in the scientific community (there isn’t), you are not free to deny that pollution is bad for anything with lungs or gills, that the extraction of fossil fuels causes an incredible amount of environmental degredation, or that oil, gas and coal are finite resources that are getting increasingly difficult and expensive to recover and will eventually run out. It is inevitable that they will have to be replaced, so why do conservatives deny it? Why do conservatives not wish the United States to be the nation that invents and gets rich off of the next great industrial revolution? Why are conservatives so pro China?

          • starrider

            This country depends on cheap energy. Turn off the power plants and freeze in the dark. Government invents nothing; people do. When a solution becomes profitable , the market will react. Most of us can’t afford $5 gasoline and $500 utility bills. Cars and trucks can’t run on wind and solar power. Perhaps life as in the 1700’s is more to your liking.

          • CatKinNY

            You didn’t answer my question, or address any of the facts I presented, none of which are in dispute, even in the most conservative of circles. You also display the usual conservative ignorance of history. You brought up the 18th century, when the Navy was founded, but it was tiny; it really grew in the first decade of the 19th, because American merchant ships needed protection from international piracy, and it continues to roam the seas to make trade safe. Ask a Somali who they fear, the private sector, or the US Navy? Who won the west, and extended our borders ‘from sea to shining sea’? You probabably think it was settlers in conastogas, all on their lonesome; in reality, government provided those settlers with incentives, in the form of land grants, tax breaks, the promise of future public investment, and back up, in the form of Army posts all over the place. Then there’s the little matter of the transcontinental railroad, a public/private partnership if ever there was one, and it wans’t built to make it easier for Bostonians to see San Francisco – it was built to facilitate trade; the Panama Canal was not built for cruise ships, nor was the interstate highway system built to make it easier for us to ‘see the USA, in our Chevrolets’. The pharmaceutical industry depends on basic research at the NIH and in universities, all financed by the government. The internet was invented by the DOD, not the private sector. So much of modern life, from antibiotics to non stick cookware, are products of US government R&D, and only the willfully ignorant refuse to acknowledge that reality. The Chinese government is investing, big time, in developing what will be the next big industrial revolution. Why do you want to cede the future to China?

      • Johnnydl

        Maybe so however it dose not allow for bribing them it is a crime and must be enforced for all government employees and private people who work for others in bribing government people and anyone working for the government, this includes cops and judges and the Supreme Court. All must be held accountable

      • Turingschild

        I have no problem with PETITIONING representative. I just think any money that changes hands in the process should be a red flag. Sex is legal too. Until you want to pay for it.

        • jfloyd

          yeppp, Money speaks louder than Words!!!…

      • CatKinNY

        Make it criminally prosecutable (for BOTH parties) for lobbyists to so much as buy a drink for any member of congress or any staffer; no campaign donations, no junkets, no underwriting of campaign events, no catered lunches over which to discuss a ‘concern’, no nothing. If we take away the tools of effective lobbying, it’ll die as no longer being cost effective. Obviously, we need publically financed elections as well, but that will require an amendment to the Constitution.

  • La1940

    Your stupid form refuses to let me sign the form. Typical American inginuity.

  • Ruth1005

    Yes, two attempts to sign, both unsuccessful, so will not forward to e-mail list until this is fixed.

    • LightShifter

      The signing is done by entering our email address and name into the fields on the right side of the screen. Not by actually signing the letter. I just did so and it worked fine for me. I even clicked the Twitter and Facebook links to then forward. Both of them worked fine for me as well

      • Barbara

        I did that LightShifter & it wouldn’t let me sign

  • Guest

    Yep, your above form isn’t working:

    Forbidden (403)

    CSRF verification failed. Request aborted.

    Reason given for failure:

    No CSRF or session cookie.

    In general, this can occur when there is a genuine Cross Site Request Forgery, or when Django’s CSRF mechanism has not been used correctly. For POST forms, you need to ensure:

    * The view function uses RequestContext for the template, instead of Context.
    * In the template, there is a {% csrf_token %} template tag inside each POST form that targets an internal URL.
    * If you are not using CsrfViewMiddleware, then you must use csrf_protect on any views that use the csrf_token template tag, as well as those that accept the POST data.

    You’re seeing the help section of this page because you have DEBUG = True in your Django settings file. Change that to False, and only the initial error message will be displayed.

    You can customize this page using the CSRF_FAILURE_VIEW setting.

  • Ccwales

    The reality is that America is now a corporatocracy. Corporations run the legislature and the people of our country have little say.

    • fourdemocracy


      With this corporatocracy we can’t get the “real news” because of bought corporate media. Even cable (run by influence even CSPAN) won’t tell us the truth.

      We used to count on PBS but since they are supported now by “sponsors” such as BP, Chevon, EXXON, etc. we can’t get the truth about the drilling impact in the Gulf, etc. Any PBS program discussing the sponsors self interest should be sponsored by someone else (like public funding).

      FCC fails to protect our interests by allowing it. President Obama does not insist on truth in news either.

      • Shaff

        Try watching and listening to Thom Hartman and others on Free Speech TV.

      • jfloyd

        It’s interesting how the BIG BUCKS get right in there….it’s currently true that Money speaks louder than Words…that’s why its gotta be changed from the outside; it ain’t gonna be changed by the inside, the insiders, by those who profit, by those who get the MONEY!!!…
        It seems time for a petition…as I wrote: looking at all these comments/responses I think getting a petition going should easily fly…& now w/ the internet it should become a shoe-in!…

    • jfloyd

      nice word: corporatocracy…we gotta change that!…it seems time for a petition…as I wrote: looking at all these comments/responses I think getting a petition going should easily fly…& now w/ the internet it should become a shoe-in!…it’s currently true that Money speaks louder than Words…that’s why its gotta be changed from the outside; it ain’t gonna be changed by the inside, the insiders, by those who profit, by those who get the MONEY!!!…

    • Mnunn53

      Hows the ” morning in America ” cheer working ? Behold , the culminaton of 30 years of unbridled Reaganism

  • J_lamal1998

    All serving members of congress should be allowed to gain nothing of value except the statutory pay and benefits due them.
    With this position in effect, their pay should start at $200,000 per year, and increase on the basis the cost of living (COL) increase.

    • onewho cares

      The cure is obvious. It’s all about money. Remove the money and you remove the problem. I agree with many of you above. It should not and will never be illegal to petition your representative, but money should never, ever enter the picture. Come to think of it…..why has it? Where did it start? Perhaps we need to look back to the beginning and nip it in the bud, Lord knows it’s a noxious weed.

  • Anonymous

    You might want to actually show the content of the letter you’re asking us to sign.

    • Guest

      You can download, print or view it on fullscreen – what do you want, an individual copy hand-delivered?

  • Good idea. Congress people should stay out of the lobby business after they leave office. How do you make that work?

    • fourdemocracy

      Have a time limit. Say…a change in administration, etc. Five years?

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  • Flippypog

    Form didn’t work – what happened?

  • Ginsyb

    I also tried to add my name and it was blocked! I agree lobbying should be a felony and is nothing short of bribery. Don’t lawmakers make enough money with just their salaries? Term limits for congress and supreme court justices and I believe one 6 year term, no retirement, one 6 year term for president, no secret service after term is up, cannot become a lobbyist until 5 years after term (despicable as a lobbyists job is). Far too many supposedly “representatives of the people” do nothing to represent the people, rather represent themselves. And why does the media not focus on the abuses of congress? Are their pockets being lined, too?

  • Charlie

    This is a GREAT start, but we need to change the underlying problem. Without publicly financed elections – and a completely level playing field for ALL candidates – we will continue to deal with the obvious result — all for 1%, and, 1% for 1%.

  • Mgpratt

    Form still not working…Please fix it as this is a good cause.

  • Bjinpville

    I have also tried to add my name here, and, it was blocked, too.

  • Charlie

    The average person that is lucky enough to have a job might get a 3% raise per year – at that rate it would take 484 YEARS to get what influence peddler will receive in just ONE YEAR! How sweet it is if you are a corporate pawn!

  • Jcpkfsn

    Tried to send and couldn’t. A winodw came up and said “Forbidden”.

  • lynflo

    Congressional/Legislative ethics has fallen to a new low. You think you can trust a Sen/Rep and then you find you were duped.

  • Mdcook

    Well, I tried:”forbidden.”

  • Ladylouise1950

    I tried to sign my name but it came up forbidden . What the heck is that all about? Who is doing the blocking?

  • Rick

    I tried to add my name and I was also blocked.

  • Guest

    Form still not working…Forbidden (403)
    CSRF verification failed. Request aborted.

  • Joseph Peters

    Not allowing me to sign letter.

  • Iainelliotmacdonald

    My name was also blocked , I agree with making lobbying a felony ,better yet make it a capital offense .

  • Peter


    Forbidden (403)

    CSRF verification failed. Request aborted.

    Reason given for failure:

    No CSRF or session cookie.
    In general, this can occur when there is a genuine Cross Site Request Forgery, or when Django’s CSRF mechanism has not been used correctly. For POST forms, you need to ensure:

    * The view function uses RequestContext for the template, instead of Context.
    * In the template, there is a {% csrf_token %} template tag inside each POST form that targets an internal URL.
    * If you are not using CsrfViewMiddleware, then you must use csrf_protect on any views that use the csrf_token template tag, as well as those that accept the POST data.

    You’re seeing the help section of this page because you have DEBUG = True in your Django settings file. Change that to False, and only the initial error message will be displayed.

    You can customize this page using the CSRF_FAILURE_VIEW setting.

  • Everything worked when I signed so don’t give up !

  • Jharter

    No one who was a senator or congressman should legally be allowed by law to become a lobbyist after retiring period. It is nothing but a crimminal job made legal by them for themselves. It in NO way benefits the public.

  • wilytone

    Tried to sign, but got a “Forbidden” message. Something is blocking me I think

  • Joed

    I would loe to sign it but it won’t let me. please fix it.

  • jeanpete

    form didn’t work for me either. i want my name on that list!

  • teddybear

    My effort to sign the letter failed also. Please correct the system so I may support your efforts to end these corrupt practices. How about some legislation to stop this kind of conduct.

  • freak flag

    New model: Run for office on allotted and evenly distributed tax dollars only. Win said office, and once the term limits have been met (or not reelected), be prohibited from joinning the workforce. If a politician leaves office in good standing, then the people shall keep him/her afloat (again tax dollars). In this way, in return for honest service to the people, the people will provide the pay back. This sort of measure would ensure that people seeking office are doing it without ulterior motives. The people running for office would almost assuredly be doing it for the right reasons. It’s called ‘sacrifice.’ Is that not the moral high water mark?

  • Vrosenberg

    Get the money out of politics so we can get back representative government! These practices are outrageous!

  • Cheryl

    It wouldn’t let me sign either.

    • Shamus

      It wouldn’t let me sign either. I kept on getting an error.

  • These elected officials only care about getting the most money they can while in office. They don’t care about us (U.S.)
    There is NO DIFFERENCE between the Democrats and Republicans, either. They all want the same thing; MONEY IN THEIR POCKETS ! MOST of them are GREEDY, MONEY GRUBBING S.O.B.’s and should have the same rules we do. They should NOT get their own insurance program and they should NOT be given the power to vote themselves raises and they should have to participate in the Social Security Program just like the rest of U.S. ! How nice it must be to know they only need to serve ONE TERM and they will be SET FOR LIFE !

  • Wingerone

    Please, we’ve known of this back door bribery for decades. While I doubt a letter will fix anything, I haven’t completely lost hope and signed it. It has to become much more of a public issue if anything is going to change. I haven’t heard much about the 99%ers lately but they’re the perfect group to make it such an issue. They believe government isn’t representing the people and that’s a big part of their movement. If they can be convinced to hold coordinated demonstrations it would help bring them back into the forefront of public notice and help force the issue. Congress is afraid of the 99%. Give them more reason to be afraid, very afraid, that their lucrative retirements from public service are on the way out.

    • jfloyd

      the question is ultimately how do we as ordinary citizens (the 99%) accomplish this???…it seems time for a petition…as I wrote: looking at all these comments/responses I think getting a petition going should easily fly…& now w/ the internet it should become a shoe-in!…it’s currently true that Money speaks louder than Words…that’s why its gotta be changed from the outside; it ain’t gonna be changed by the inside, the insiders, by those who profit, by those who get the MONEY!!!…as I also wrote: anything or anybody that compromises elected officials from honestly & only representing the people who elected them should be outlawed…while they are & after they are an elected official!!!..

  • Randall Curtis

    Those who create laws are breaking them. All Congressmen and Congresswomen who engage in this kind criminal activity should be prosecuted and sent to prison. Will this corruption ever change? Someone has to be strong enough to take a stand for our country and stop this injustice, I am tired of crooks running our country. We need someone of great integrity who can’t be bought. Then they can get rid of he congressional crooks that infest our government.

  • Carolinablu

    I was blocked from signing the letter too. This tactic by our elected congresspeople is outrageous. I did not know how extreme it was until I did some research. These people should be required to write a legal document acknowleging that they will not accept gifts, money or consideration for employment from ANY lobbyist for a period of time (say 8 years) after they leave Congress. Personally, I think they are also voting themselves too much in yearly salary also. I know DC is expensive, but if they can’t handle it or don’t have enough to live on – get a part time job outside of the legislative field, and definitely not as a lobbyist.

  • TK

    I was also blocked from adding my name to this very important list. One more thing that should be a crime is going from the federal reserve to Citibank and getting a 100+ million dollar bonus within months . The integrity of our entire financial system has been comprimised for years. Things need to change now.

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  • Gizmo

    I also had some small trouble sending in the form. However, after a first attempt rejection, I merely backed up, clicked forward again to my form, and the second try went smoothly.

  • Ericgreen52

    This crookery needs to stop!!NOW!!!

  • Bryon Whitley

    Won’t let me sign.

    • Miqui97

      I couldn’t sign either. “Forbidden” CSRF Verification Failed. What’s up with this….we won’t win. We never will…

  • Green589

    Agree totally – our congress is being bought – The voters have no say in our political system as it stands today!

    • jfloyd

      again, Money speaks louder than Words…that’s why its gotta be changed from the outside; it ain’t gonna be changed by the inside, the insiders, by those who profit, by those who get the MONEY!!!…

    • starrider

      That is the voter’s fault. My vote has never bought; people gripe but don’t vote or aren’t informed enough to cast an intelligent vote.

  • Wingerone

    It should be illegal for anyone in Congress to go to work for anyone who lobbied them or they passed regulation on. Almost all of them had careers before they ran for office. Let them return to those careers. Right now public office is seen as a path to wealth, not public service. As a result we’re getting the wrong kind of people running for office. If we change the rewards at the end of the path maybe we’ll get people who are actually interested in doing the right thing and getting things done.

    • Dorothy

      I absolutely agree with you. There needs to be a law preventing any US senator or House rep and their staff to not be able to go work for anyone who lobbied them or they passed legislation for while in office. Further I think they should not be allowed to be lobbiysts at any time leaving office. I do not think some legislators will do the right thing so we need laws to prevent them from acting against us….. Dorothy ( Tucson, Az)

    • The entire system is geared towards attracting career politicians. You have to put your life on hold for the duration of your race, if you lose in disgrace you’re finished, if you win, you’ve got to put your life on hold for the duration of your term. There’s no way to do that with the current system without career politicians.

      So, here’s my recommendation.

      Let’s just replace the House with an electronic voting system and law submission system so that we the people become the House. All laws must originate in the House, the Senate can amend laws but the House must approve them. We the people become the House and the Senate can’t pass anything without our approval.

      • AR

        Better yet, replace the SENATE with that electronic voting system, while keeping the House intact.

        The Senate is completely unrepresentative and undemocratic – 33% of the nation’s minority population (which has now reached 25% of total US population) resides in California buts gets only 2% of the 100 votes in the Senate.

        • Jacksquat

          Of course, you are only counting legal citizens are’nt you ? Because undocumented aliens have no legal right to be represented in the senate and should never have that right. They can follow the legal path to citizenship that has been established in this country.

        • starrider

          The senate represents the states where as the House represents the population; otherwise, rural states would no representation. We live in a Republic and not a democracy.

      • Jayme Allan

        Electronic voting systems are fraudulent! Start searching on you tube! We the people need to wake up and be aware of what is going on and get involved. We need to call, email, write our Congressmen. The majority of Americans are asleep – and without our involvement corruption abounds. Yes- the link needs to be broken between the lobbyists and Congress – and government in general. The best way to do that is to return to a limited constitutional government. Because the government is big and powerful – it draws lobbyist. The role of government needs to be reexamined and return to the constitution. For one – amendment 10- the states determine the laws not the federal government. And if the government is to defend America and not to build empires around the world – that removes the majority of the budget and the power Congress has taken on. We have gone astray because we are uninvolved and we are not holding our Congress and President to their oath to the Constitution. I am grateful for United Republic exposing the corruption between lobbyist and Congress.

        • Jayme Allan

          Oops not Congressmen but Congress (women, too!)

        • Bryan

          You are on the spot with this. Apathy has overtaken the average citizen today. Polls suggest that (on a very good voting year, where the public is emotional about the election) show a maximum of registered voters actually voting. There aren’t really and published statistics (at least none credible) showing empirical evidence about how many (or what percentage) of voting age citizens aren’t even registered. People are quick to whine, but slow to act.

      • Bryan

        Unfortunately our governing system is actually a Republic, and not an absolute Democracy (most people forget this), which is why we have “delegates” instead of a popular vote to award national office. To put the control of laws and elections in the hands of the people completely would undermine the autocratic control of the wealthy. The “two party system” and career politics has perverted our governmental system, and continually weakens the power of the citizens of our great nation. See historical documentation of how many civilizations throughout history have used various means to keep the “people in line”, such as how certain rulers/powers have given apparent power to its citizens. The truth under these actions (such as the Magna Carta) and others only give limited freedoms and power to the average citizen. It really isn’t much different today.

        • starrider

          We have become the greatest nation on earth because of our Repiblic. There’s nothing unfortunate about that. It is unfortunate that half of our population has become takers and expect government handouts rather than working for a living. In this country anyone can climb to the limits of his/her abilities. Too many have no desire to improve themselves and make sacrifices to do so. Nothing will change as as the welfare checks and foodstamps keep rolling in. Instead of being a temporary helping as intented, it has become a way of life from one gereration to the next. People have become content to sell their freedom and self worth for government crumbs.

          • Shakerdog1

            The problem is we are only calling people the takers but just take a look at every state and local government as well as most large companies and you will see who the real takers are. Lets at least be fair and honest about who does the most taking as you call it.

    • jfloyd

      RIGHT ON!!!…my very sentiments!!!…as I wrote: anything or anybody that compromises elected officials from honestly & only representing the people who elected them should be outlawed…while they are & after they are an elected official!!!..

    • Wanderlustig1

      You speak from my heart!

  • Romanza2008

    My name was also blocked. I agree, lobbying of any kind should be completely stopped and considered a crime. How do you stop the very people who control the laws to vote against themselves? Term limits with laws forbidding Congress to work for any company or industry which they did business with while in congress or which they voted laws to aid them. I believe one 6 year term for the President is a little too much, as this position requires so much learning while on the job and how to work with congress, etc. that a second term is required in order to accomplish anything meaningful.

    • Ladylouise1950

      I totally agree. I also think that Congreeman/woman whose main objeective to nake our President one term should be penalized for not taking care of the needs of the people and the real problems at hand, They should put their egos in the pockets and sit on them. What a disgrace.

  • Krl080509

    Would not let me sign either. I will try again another time because I think this is important. We’re never going to get Congress to do what they were elected to do (represent us) until we get the incentives out. Then the only people who will run for Congress will be those who really want to be a public servant for the good of the the country.

  • Douglas Merrey

    The website would not accept my signature, it gives a message, “FORBIDDEN: CSRF verification failed. Request aborted.

  • Remryan

    Why is my signature forbidden?

  • EdWa

    add me to the list of “it won’t let me sign”

  • Mike

    I guess, the NSA at the CIA’s request has stopped us from signing….. What a country, were the Alphabet Agencies can do what ever they want.

  • Will Albert

    REPUBLIC REPORT, get your TECH together please… couldn’t sign (same a folks below) and consider this a very important campaign to take our Republic back from avaricious elected Congress. make Congress voluntary like the armed forces… Pay their “costs” only and a stipend. Make Congress a single slightly lengthier term, no re-elections…

  • Dkurtzweil

    I wasn’t able to sign letter, but I agree – the greed and corruption have to stop!

  • Margotkerr

    I could not sign either

  • EdWa

    I just signed. You have to allow cookies from this site in order to sign. In Win7 click privacy report at the bottom of the page. Then click settings and lower the privacy setting 1 notch. Refresh page and then you can sign. Go back to privacy report to restore your settings. Definitely worth signing and the effort.

    • Jeff Morris

      EdWa, After numerous blocked attempts to sign I lowered my privacy settings as you stated, and it finally allowed me to sign on. Thanks! Others being blocked need to do this.

  • Vgottheimer

    It won’t let me sign, either.

  • How about this….since we seem to be “pledge” happy these days (thanks Gover Nordquist) – every entering congress / senate person should pledge that they will NOT take a position lobbying for a company for X years after retirment…..any other position cool, lobbying NOT. Now there is a pledge that makes sense.

    • Would Historian for only a couple million a year be cool?

  • Bsurly

    Forbidden (403)
    My attempt to sigh was “aborted”.

  • Matt

    Blocked also. Publicly funded elections is the only was out of this mess we are in!

    • H S Nydick

      Actually, Matt, I have been suggesting that for quite some time now. I even have an in-depth plan as to how it would work. The problem, as I see it, is that it would need to be law. So, the question is, ‘How do we get the politicians, who benefit from the current law, to vote for such a complete change in the way things are done?”

      • vivien

        Only way is to vote every incumbent out of office who won’t support such a law.

        • jfloyd

          RIGHT ON…another way to deal w/ the problem…probably, particularly now, the only realistic way…

      • jfloyd

        again, Money speaks louder than Words…that’s why its gotta be changed from the outside; it ain’t gonna be changed by the inside, the insiders, by those who profit, by those who get the MONEY!!!…

    • jfloyd

      do you mean:: Publicly funded elections are the only way out of this mess which we are in…?…if so I agree, but it seems that would only partially deal with the problem…

  • Mel

    How can it be stopped, when the people that write the laws are the ones that are abusing it, when they’re out of office and beyond the reach of the laws they write? Only a few have been sent to jail, unlike the former Governors or Illinois!

  • Jackie

    It wouldn’t let sign either.

  • Patti

    Not able to sign

  • Annshotwell

    Would not let me sign. Would like to hear what congress is doing about this.

  • Mwr1550

    I was blocked as well, SOmething fishy going on here

  • Tony

    Great idea. Is a no brainier legislation is compromised, and for 100 years or more they have pulled the wool over the PEOPLES EYES, but the flow of INFORMATION has change for ever!!!

    • Jeff Morris

      Tried to sign on but was blocked? Looks like someone doesn’t like the message of this petition. Isn’t post “Corporations United” 21’st century Democracy in America great!

      • Jeff Morris

        I know the blocking may just be a tech-glitch, but you can’t help but wonder. Truthout, a site that does important expose articles that few MSM news outlets will touch, has had repeated cyber attacks in an attempt to silence them in recent weeks.

  • Pbdesigns1

    It wouuldn’t let me sign Paul Bailey

  • Daniel A Wyllie

    It’ll never change until American’s take up arms and start a bloody revolution . You want change , real change , then bloood needs to be shed on American soil for a change . Hang em all as far as I’m concerned . We have nobody to blame but ourselves for being so trusting over the year’s . We allowed them to hijack our government because we were all too busy trying to live our lives and raise our families . Keeeping an eye on government is a full time job no American has time for unlike the uprising’s in Arab nation’s for example . Who has time to protest for days on end only to fall on the deaf ear’s of the American government ! TOO LITTLE TOO LATE , JUST SIT BACK AND ENJOY WATCHING THE FALL OF AMERICA ! I PERSONALLY LOVE IT AND CAN’T WAIT TO SEE IT HAPPEN . MY FAITH AND TRUST IS IN GOD NOT WASHINGTON .

    • bart

      …”bloody revolution, blood shed shed on American soil, hang em all, can’t wait to see it happen…” your faith and trust in your big (probably white) imaginary friend has allowed you to loose sight of some things like democracy and christ-like behavior don’t you think?
      typical ‘christian’…

  • Maab76

    Why was my signature forbidden? Was this posted earlier and a recipient of my endorsement?

  • Leslie Piper

    Time for Gil O’Teen to save the day. Head this stuff off, all of it.

  • Scott

    When trying to sign, the response is “Forbidden”! What gives??????

  • Wvoecks

    Great time for term limits and ban on lobbying for 10 tears after leaving Congress and put and begin to put an end to legalized bribery.

  • John Marelli

    As if this wasn’t bad enough; congressmen and senators are entitled to a pension because they have been elected to that position. They serve their first year in that position, then, at the end of the year, they retire. The following day they re-instate themselves into the same position. In that second year they collect their salary plus the retirement benefit almost doubling their income from the first year.
    As much as I thought Rick Perry had little to offer as a candidate, I did like his idea about a part time congress and senate. If they truly wish to serve they can keep their day job and serve the people on a part time basis. I aways said, “New Jersey is a great state if we just didn’t have politicians”.

  • Guest

    Because you have information already in the areas for which you are requesting information (name, email etc.) instead of below the these areas, my auto fill form program does not work; therefore, even though I wanted to sign your petition, I did not. Get a better IT department.

  • Stef

    You do have a problem here with people signing this petition. I was not able to sign it either – “Forbidden (403) CSRF verification failed. Request aborted. More information available with DEBUG = True.”

  • Neither wife or I could sign forbidden like a lot…why? Love and agree with comments. Letter is nice but more that that I wish we could actually sit down with our own congress ladies, Maria Cantwell, Patty Murray, democrats and Jamie Herrera Butler , republican and have a nice face to face talk with them as to what they intend to do about this? We worked hard on campaigns and gave money to the two democrats over the years. The actually came to our meetings and met with us when they were first elected but over the years the tended to meet only with the rich and famous…although weekly they want money and our visa number but never have a place for us to respond to them. We can go in and if not blocked choose from a drop down list an issue, write a brief note and possibly get a prepared response. Nevery have the explained why we are still in Korea, why they have not stood up on these women issues and fought back like telling the men in congress or runnng for presient they will ageee to the abortion issues and attacks on women if they agree to a bill that mandates that any man forcing himself on a woman and getting her pregnant will have his penis removed. A bill like that would shut those guys in congress the constantly cheat on their wives. I want to know just why we are are war all over the world, why we dont bring home our 30,,000 troops in Korea to guard out own border, why the US allows the oil companies to have subsites….or corporations that sent our jobs to India China etc. Why congress can have great health care benefits but millions here can’t, why our congress keeps asking us for money when they make so much and should be giving to those that no longer have jobs thanks to them….As for our public schools….as a retired school teacher and administrator I know how they destroyed our public education with the damn No Child Left Behind that left millions of kids behind and dropping out with the testing program cutting of so many wonderful elective progams that were the only reason some kids were in schools. Anyhow I and my family are fed up…where are my congress ladies?????

  • hubydoll166

    This is an outrage! Treasonous bastards selling us out and telling us to make austerity cuts while they sell out the american people. Is it any wonder why this cvountry is going down the tubes? Them bastards would have us living in poverty for their security. We must eject them all. I watched a piece on Rachel Maddow last nite with Senator James Inhofe and its no wonder why they dont want to go forward with a sustainable green future or at least supplement oil and coal. It a true crime and we let them abuse us and their positions like this..NO MORE, Im pissed off and I ainty gonna take this sell out anymore..What is a conservative in congress? There is no such thing, they want you to live on hopes and pipe dreams wehile you pay for their lavish lifestyles and Democrats bribe you with welfare so they can all sell our country out..Its our damn country..the people’s and we better clamp down and make prision room for all of them…Democrats and Republican VOTERS must unite as one and put these fabricated differences aside and lets CLEAN HOUSE!

  • Beverlyjbarnes

    When I hit send on the signature page, it failed to go through.

  • RS

    Got an error. Sabotage !

  • Linda Tyler Murray

    Our Congress is totally out of control. It is no wonder that there is so much corruption in being elected to Congress. Of course, they want to serve because if they play their cards right they will end up millionaires when they retire. This must be stopped.

  • cravin_moorehead

    I am shocked! Corrupt politicians. They have always put themselves before those they serve [sic]. If the “Tea Baggers” weren’t owned by the Koch brothers, and they really had the interests of the public at heart, they would be in the streets, standing next to the 99%.

    Now, money has so infiltrated our political and judicial system that there is little hope for us.

    We are screwed.

    • Why are so many like this flagged as inappropriate…these and most on here that someone marked inappropriate are exactly what we need to speak out on…and mandeate that our representatives respond to hese comments.

  • Tknox3593

    Pigs at the trough. The only solution to all this is term limits for all members of congress 2 terms senate, three for the house. The other change is to stop the year ’round legislating. Get the pols out of D.C. after three months – that’s it! Do your work, GO HOME! What would the boys on K Street do for the rest of the year?

  • Dhump59

    I agree with Leslie Piper! OFF with their heads. Ur the pied piper i’v been waiting to follow!!!

  • Rriverdan35

    riverdan, I was forbidden to sign up by my computer

  • Indyone

    I was not allowed to sign my name to the petition.

  • Red Sonia

    I was blocked from signing also, I see that I’m not the only one! What’s going on?

  • It should be against the law to a lobby congress once you have been in congress. All of them are clowns

  • Dhump59

    Amen To Daniel A Wyllie 100% agreement.

  • jstsyn

    Ethics left Congress long ago. Term limits. Make them sign a binding contract upon election to public service saying they stay retired from any lobbyist position for a term of ten years upon retiring.

  • Robert Porter

    It would not let me sign. Is something afoul afoot with this site?

  • 4you2read

    me too. Did not let me sign

  • chet

    WWJD? Same thing he did to the other money changers.

  • Millardatkins

    I was blocked


    What if lobbying is prohibited to congresspeople for 20 years after leaving office, or permanently? Otherwise, there is corruption. Now, the corruption is blatant.

  • Ivgone2far

    We hire them to take care of us, but there main interest is taking care of themselves.

    They spend millions to get a job, then they collect billions out of our pockets.

  • camelot2

    Won’t let me sign.

  • Barbara Payne

    anyone leaving congress or senate and goes to work for a lobbyist should not be allowed to receive his retirement or keep his healtlh care with the government…. In fact, anyone receiving money from any lobbyist while in the senate or congress should be at once without benefits.

  • Beaureguard

    You can go to hell for lying as well as stealing

  • Daminks

    I was blocked also. What’s going on?????

  • Stacey

    I got the following message when I tried to sign: Forbidden (403)
    CSRF verification failed. Request aborted.

  • Abacoachitects

    My name was blocked

  • Gerald Sutliff

    Even though the departing legislators’ behavior is outrageous and, mostly, unconscionable, however there are reasons. The first is the outrageous amounts of money it takes to run for office; we the people could do something about it. That something requires us to support legislation (it comes around every congress) that forbids congressmen and women from receiving campaign contributions, period. The second would be to provide federal funding and refunding for campaign expenses. Also we should keep in mind that congressional retirement benefits are quite generous; just how much is required for a “dignified” retirement, anyway?

  • alan margulies

    The lack of ethics in this practice is bad enough, but collecting retirement benefits from the
    very people they have sold out is outrageous.
    At the very least, they should lose all benefits.
    Why should taxpayers be forced to contribute to this corruption?
    Haven’t they bled the system enough already?
    Disqualify them from ever collecting benefits once they’ve taken positions on K Street,
    and bar them from returning to government “service”.

    • So how do we get this done? Asking Congress to pass any laws forcing ethical behavior would never be voted into law!

    • jfloyd

      it seems time for a petition…as I wrote: looking at all these comments/responses I think getting a petition going should easily fly…& now w/ the internet it should become a shoe-in!…it’s currently true that Money speaks louder than Words…that’s why its gotta be changed from the outside; it ain’t gonna be changed by the inside, the insiders, by those who profit, by those who get the MONEY!!!…

  • Hawkfinder

    Had I, as a CEO, engaged in the regregious conflicts of interest pursued by some Members, past and present, I know that my family and I would have been disgraced. Would I have been the object of criminal or civil suits? Probably.

  • Not only should members of government not be able to lobby, but the whole practice of lobbying must end. They work for the people not the corporations.

  • Caroleh

    I agree with Wingerone. It should be illegal, but it should go further than that. I am with Dylan Ratigan and his efforts to support a constitutional amendment which would get money out of the campaign process. They get bought on the way into office by accepting big sums
    of money for their elections. I believe in public financing of elections. Everyone gets the same amount of money and TV time. An amendment of this kind would have to come through the state legislators because our current congress would not pass it.

    • Good luck with that…the recently elected Republican Govs are clearly not going to help out on this!

  • Susan

    Stop the revolving door!!!!! Let’s make public funded elections! It should be illegal for a candidate to take $$ or $$$$$$ from special interests.

    • starrider

      Where does the money for these public elections come from? Are you talking about another tax or do you want to borrow more from China?

  • reenie46

    Once we AGAIN breakup the disgraceful ownership makeup of our nation’s media we’ll restore democracy. Recognize that it would be hard to find a citizen unaware of the Occupy movements, while it’s extremely hard to find citizens aware of present attempts by a small but growing number of members of Congress, The Senate and noted citizens trying to introduce constitutional amendment aimed at campaign funding reform. The difference; The Occupy Movement has no stated message so it appears that 100% of media gives them exposure, while those interested in restoring democracy through Constitutional amendment have a definite stated message which threatens the opportunity of media owners, who also own myriads of corporations, to unfairly influence elections and government actions with campaign contributions, and as such media carries these folks message to only 1% of citizens. The folks sponsoring such amendment suggest citizens use the social media to spread awareness to their movement, as did Al Gore this week. 24 hour major media supported by us and we must turn to the social media to effect change?

    • starrider

      This constitutional admendment is great if you are a socialist or marxist. After all Bernie Sanders, chairman of the socialist caucus is sponsoring the idea. With America as divided as it is, I would oppose any changes to the Constitution other than “Congress shall make no laws that exempt themselves”. Our Constitution has been trampled for years, but never before has it been attacked as it is now.

  • Otolbg

    Unable to sign.

  • Stevewalker240

    why could’t i sign either

  • Norma

    I tried to sign the letter and I was blocked what is going on can anyone help?

  • Norma

    This is what I got when I tried to sign the letter.
    Forbidden (403)

    CSRF verification failed. Request aborted.

    fore information is available with DEBUG=True.

  • yodadog

    Our government is consumed by greed through campaign contributions, lobbying and a revolving door for staffing in all three branches. Until it’s stopped, we have no government by and for the people.

  • Ed Bruce

    “One small step”, in the right direction!

  • Suleimansweis

    The way to elemenat bribery is public financing of all election that in turn well free public offic holders from asking for mony insted they well be representing the General public as long as they are forsed to rely on specail enterest for mony coruption well remain as is now

  • Jackiesaner

    Why was my name on petition not accepted??

  • jfloyd

    enough said; time to act to do something effective…enough is enough…

  • sorry

    I was not able to sign, note said aborted??…is this why all the above continues?… no wonder they flock to Washington, to steal, fat lunches, time off, dress up time, get a nice retire package with benifits only they are allowed to have and then jump ship with the biggest bidder, one has to wonder why other countries and voters are giving up on the USA and our process, really sad, we use to be honorable and trusted, now we are on the way down and out. Gotta get fresh minds and clean leaders into office, shorter terms, lower pay, our SS retire package and our med package, then they will live our life style and be able to relate to the other the money out of politics, all running for office will only be allowed to have the same amount of dollars, equal playing big business donations who will want favors later.

  • jfloyd

    enough said; time to act, to do something effective!…enough is enough!…

  • rita

    matt i agree with you. it wouldn’t let me sign either.

  • Lgruschow

    This is in the right direction! I was blocked from signing also, this need to be fixed, can’t win under these circumstances.

  • cchelled

    Blocked… :-/

  • Bill arnold

    Stop the stealing and the lying and have the guts to do the right thing. Remember god will judge you in the end so enjoy it while it lasts

  • jfloyd

    anything that compromises an elected official from only & honestly representing the people who elected them should be outlawed…while they are & after they are an elected official!!!…

  • Tlcpargin

    Here we go I think our soldiers should get paid wat they pay congress & congress should get the soldiers pay!!! It is totally redicules the amount of money we already pay these rich people & they havent even come close to earning it The soldiers deserve way mor than any of the crooked politicians!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Y KNOT

    I also got a FORBIDDEN 403 and was not able to sign!

  • Gmleonard0

    Our Missouri Senator Roy Blunt has to be the number one Hog At The Trough. When first elected to the house he divorced his wife of 31 years and married a tobacco lobbyist. He has two sons and one daughter who are all lobbyists.
    Our Democracy has been Destroyed by those elected to Congress. The pending Presidential election will not solve anything but will provide a diversion of sorts.

  • Pat

    An EDIT is needed on the first page of your “Ides of March” letter: The first sentence of the second paragraph is missing a “the” as the third word. Maybe this was intentional, as a schizoid “tee hee” to prime conscience; but this ruse is so well known by the sociopaths who run our country, it would only be interpreted as “Godfather laughing”.

  • Peterolea92

    vote them all out

  • Vmaestro1

    Once we have elected them, we totally lose control of our politicians. Many of them have no scruples about serving their own personal interests to the detriment of the people who trusted them enough to vote for them. This is UNETHICAL, EVEN DISHONEST and there should be a set of rules and regulations preventing all politicians from using their terms to seek wealth instead of doing the job they promised to do. There must be punishment for those who do not fulfill their responsibilities.

    • starrider

      Wht do you re-elect them?

  • Sandy

    When I attempt to send the letter I get the following message: Forbidden (403) CSRF verification failed. Request aborted.

  • Fazman

    All the more reason to have term limits and not allow pensions unless a person serves a minimum of 20 years or more.
    The term limits should be the same as the President’s..a maximum of eight years.Doing so would limit the extent to which those seeking increased wealth could build a power base and influence.

  • Stephen

    I agree …Publicly funded, one person-one vote elections and blocking any government representative from taking public sector jobs that they had any influence with while in office would be a reasonable start to fix the mess our government system has become.

  • Ejjc

    Why don’t we have what would amount to “none compete” clause for members of Congress, stipulating that they can not work for any lobbying firm or law firm that lobbies, start a lobbying or law firm that lobbies, for some period of time (equal to the the length of their service in Congress? that would become a de facto term limit as I’d expect that few retiring or replaced members of Congress would risk the loss of a lucrative future by staying in Congress too long) or in any other way work privately in any capacity that allowed them to capitalize on their Congressional service.

  • Cheryl

    I lowered my privacy settings all the way down, and also specifically allowed this site to use cookies. No joy.

  • Johnnydl

    All who bribe, those that they represent and those that receive bribes in any form should be tried for TREASON and every penny they or their families and all assets and all property must be returned to the Federal government. The people have a right to good, honest representation by any and all government people, they searw an oth to do so, if not then they are guilty of treason and must face the firing squads.

  • Saldrich

    Unable to complete signing. Got the following error.
    Forbidden (403)
    CSRF verification failed. Request aborted.

    More information is available with DEBUG=True

  • Bruce Johnson

    It won’t make any difference who gets elected if we don’t get money and these type f “perks” out of politics.

  • Back in the day they used to call it “taxation without representation.” Someone is buying our government and are using our money to do it. While our holdings decrease, their holdings increase. Yes, it’s legalized bribery and it is corrupting the government that was once ours.

  • L Trevino

    These folks do not surprise me at all, Dem. or Rep., they are simply greedy and the funny thing is that we’re all going to die someday and they will take nothing with them but leave a legacy of greed. Their middle name “GREED” engraved forever on their tombstones.
    Also, they’re all looking for jobs while on the US Payroll with benefits, I thought they were concerned with our federal deficit.
    This too is welfare, except it lasts a lifetime.

  • Beckacross

    I tried 4 times to sign the letter and got a forbidden unable to verify message. I would really like to sign this letter, as my senator is retiring.

  • greg mckinstry

    it would not take my name etc

  • Madlilith

    This is BS that I nor anyone else can sign this petition… But that doesn’t mean we give up. WE WILL FIND A WAY TO SUBMIT THIS COMPLAINT NO MATTER WHAT! (Just in case the petition signature link was blocked on purpose by those who it would effect and their constituents.) If what these 34 abdicating Congress members are doing in their next line of work is legit then there should be no shame in offering the public the truth about what those prospects are exactly.
    I completely agree: We need to stage an intervention between our government and big business as it’s become detrimental to America’s health. We cannot believe that our government is just and we cannot believe we are best serving the American majority by being in the pocket of big business. Like any cancer, this needs to be found and cut out in order for us to survive this.

  • Dave

    Oh my god! When are we going to stop and stand-up for ourselves-as citizens, and get rid of these terribly corrupted people who control this terribly corrupted system, where these jerks-who supposedly represent us-continue to take it all away from us-the hard working people…It’s way past time to say enough-is-enough!!!

    • viv

      1) Pass a constitutional amendment to prohibit all donations to all members of Congress and Pacs/SuperPacs.
      2) Pass a term limits law for all of Congress.
      3) Public financing of all elections.
      4) Vote out every incumbent out who does not agree or comply with the above 3.

      • jfloyd

        5) Pass a constitutional amendment that disallows any elected official (for Congress, etc) from accepting any favors from the private, corporate sector, or (subsequent to their elected duties) becoming lobbyists – or assuming any form of political influence – for the private, corporate sector…[not sure how well this is articulated; legally I know it needs more work]…

  • Nancyzadroga

    It’s about time this became illegal. That’s what you should be asking us to make them do.

  • Oberonvex

    There was a time when our politicians had been payed little to nothing for the ( privilege) of being democratically elected.

  • Tebalzer

    I hate to say it but, the ONLY way anyone in this country will ever stop political corruption in this country is with violence & force. The Senate and Congress have proven YOUR OPINION means NOTHING to them, as long as they can figure out how to stay in office. Until you start hanging them for their treasonist acts, they will continue. OCCUPY has no power, and Anonymous is unable to really bring any real change.

    Your Forefathers would have been shooting in Novemer of 2008, when the bank stole all your money and jobs from you. Keep acting like sheep, and you will keep getting slaughtered…’s as simple as that.

    • David Kearney

      I’ve been saying for a while that our country is in need of a revolution. The only thing that I’m afraid of is that the people crazy enough to go through with a violent overthrow of a corrupt government are people who I completely disagree with politically. I’d bet that republicans own guns 3 to 1 vs democrats.

      In all honesty, the systems in place (financial, corporate, political, judicial) are in no way down to go against everything they’ve been building over the last 40 years. We’re basically F’d. When people say to me “if Canada and France are so much better, why don’t you move there”, I seriously consider it.

    • Jkodl

      Those that beat their swords into plowshares are plowing for those that didn’t.

  • Jon wilcox

    if it will not let you sign in go back and try again. it worked thw second time i signed in.

  • Joe5243

    You crooked bastards, you represent us, what a joke, you represented the special interests, not the people, so going for the lobbiest jobs, shows us just hw crooked you are.

  • Ya know, why does this need to even be addressed!!! It what ego inflated universe do these politicians think that this is business as usual. You cannot turn your head for a second or the very people we elect to do our bidding will F- us in a second. Kinda like Clarance Thomas wife working for the Republican Party Advancement, yet he continues to vote in legislation benefiting his interests. As a Supreme Court Justice, none the less!

  • If you retire and take a pension from the government than you should not be allowed to work for any company. You get enough in pension to retire in a very well manner that should be up to your life style. If you go to work then you should not be able to get your pension until you quit working. You eill probably retire to some other country anyway. So go there and leave our tax dollars here.

  • Dhfabian

    These are the people who insisted that a woman and child getting by on $4000 AFDC lived in lazy luxury. Of course, they represent a nation that was stupid enough to believe it.

  • Larrylearned

    we have a bought congress lobbying should be outlawed period

  • Earnmar

    Every year I’ve sent a letter to each of my Senators (B Boxer & D Feinstein) complaining that our Congress folk go directly from the Legislature to lobbying. I always state I believe there should be a law that this practice be stopped and making it illegal. I also state I doubt that that law will never be passed because the Congress themselves would have to pass the law and that is never going to happen. It is a disgrace this is allowed to occur.

  • hesamenace

    politicians are actually psychopaths who are in love with themselves and are in love with people sucking up to them. They are proof that they should be in mental institutions.whores crooks and psychotics

  • Larrymcmasters

    sob s

  • Jjohta

    I signed the petition and you hijacked my contact list and sent the petitions on in my name. YOU SUCK DICKS!

  • Ykramaiah

    How about putting lobbying by ex senators and excongressmen on ballott of presidential election, as also salaries and medical benefits of them and term limits ,nomore than two terms?

  • ronbudro

    UNTIL the American people wake the hell up, ain’t nothing gonna change. It’s that simple.

  • Lenearl

    HOWDY!!! “SEE”… RecKON, “THEY” need to “BE” told about using The(e/r) (Imaginary) “scAle”… beFORE GOD’S “JudgeMEnt” CALL before THEE(‘S) “MASTER’S (‘FAIR’) BalAnce”…”SEE” ~>>> “0”…/…”0″ (???) 16 MAR 2012

  • The term conflict of interest comes to mind, just like when members of the finance committee take campaign contributions from Wall Street, or the Energy committee take them from big oil. We have the best Government money can buy. Just OUTLAW LOBBYING

  • somebody willing to stand up


    • The Larks

      Remember there are some really fine congress men and women who are outnumbered and yet continue to try to save our government and country.We need people like Ron Delloms, Kusinich, Jim McDermot, Rus Feingold, and many others. We often wonder how they have such fortitude to continue without having much success. Also, they, as well as all the other idiots were elected by US.

      Term limits will also remove the good people. Like throwing out the baby with the bath water. We must have public financing of our elections. No one should be allowed to give a public official any money, and after retiring, congress people should not be allowed to participate in our government in any way.

    • starrider

      We already have term limits. The entire congress could be changed in 6 years if the voters wanted to. Vote for the country instead of selling your vote for government handouts.

  • Bradssanders

    Not worried about Barney Frank or Dennis (move to OR or WA and run!) Kucinich going lobbyist or corporate whore, but the rest of them need this, or even better a law against it. Anyone for campaign finance reform starting with Citizens United?

  • These asses are always taking bribes. There are almost no non-parasitic Congressmen. Thats why they ignore our welfare as a matter of policy.

  • E Harwood

    america has become a country of greedy politicians stuffing their pockets..public interest is not part of their agenda. conflict of interest does not apply to anyone.. now with two arms of the government, no check and balance..corporations are now people, They all need to be replaced. This is not the country we grew up in. Why cant people see that reelecting career politicians is not in our best interest. 2 or 3 terms and get out with no lobbying for 20 years after leaving office.

  • Barbara Crawford

    I was able to sign the form and also tweet it and post to facebook. I don’t know if the letter will do much good though, because these retiring crooks don’t have a reason to answer it. I’m really sick of our entire government and not sure what it’s gonna take to fix it.

    Perhaps we should replace house members with a draft system of ordinary Americans to serve one term in Congress. Expenses could be covered (including a decent salary). This would eliminate career politicians and allow ordinary citizens to take part in our government. Not sure if this could work, but it’s worth looking into.

    We the people need to begin the process of passing a Constitutional Amendment to take back our democracy from these political crooks!!!

  • Tkrsweetsugar

    Evidently has been going on all these years,and the American Public has just not known, and understood what has been happening! It is absolutely disgraceful,and means(as I suspected from the goings on of the past few years),that no doubt MANY of these people GET ELECTED SIMPLY TO GET ACCESS TO ALL THE MONEY FLOATING AROUND,AND COULD NOT CARE LESS ABOUT THE VOTERS WHO PUT THEM IN OFFICE! Now,THERE ARE MANY HARD WORKING,COMPLETELY DEDICATED PEOPE IN OFFICE TOO,MANY FOR A VERY LONG TIME,WHO HAVE HELPED THEIR FOLKS BACK HOME A GREAT DEAL! But,I suspect now that several of the more “newly elected” ones, especially from the 2010 Mid Term Elections,are there for EXACTLY that reason! Not only for FURTURE jobs,but to collect for THEIR FAMILIES,THE SAME HEALTHCARE BENEFITS THAT THEY DO NOT WANT “us”TO HAVE,AND A BIG PENSION,TO GO ALONG WITH THEIR SS BENEFITS=things we do not get=but we pay for THEM TO GET!And,since REPUBLICANS HAVE GONE COMPLETELY INSANE SINCE BEING ELECTED,I ALSO SUSPECT A LOT MORE OF THEM ARE IN IT FOR THE $MILLIONS THAN Democrats are! I also know a way to STOP It=PASS A LAW NOW,TO STOP THESE PEOPLE FROM WORKING AS A LOBBYIST FOR TEN YRS AFTER THEY LEAVE OFFICE,BECAUSE RIGHT NOW THEY ARE BEING “bought&paid for,AT OUR EXPENSE!

  • Deborah

    Our government is supposed to be “by the people” NOT by the lobbyists! There needs to be a law that prevents members of Congress from becoming lobbyists, even after they “retire”.

  • Journeyman5556

    Basically the whole system is flawed but there are simple solutions in this day and age we should use our electronics and our representitives should have a polling server . and when an issue or a bill is up for a vote we all could weigh in via the polling server and require the senator /congressman to vote the way the majority has selected thus eliminating lobbiest all together .secondly all public servants ie: senators and congressman should recieve NO PENSIONS for if i am fired imy former company doesnt pay me pension after im fired or quit why do they!we have over 400 represenitives multiply by there salaries /pensions and all the perks paid by us need to end that to me is the truest welfare that need s stopped !just a few thoughts no lobbiests lower debt easy as that!

  • Drmonroe1952


  • Billsmith80

    There is a lot of alarmism on this topic. Hasn’t anyone read any American history? The issues here have always been with us since the American Revolution. And that revolution was simply an attempt to improve an even more corrupt system that predated it. There is no such thing as the perfect political system where every crook goes to jail.

    We have to work on improving our political systems, but even if we succeed one thing you can count on: The new system will be tested by clever people just as aggressively as our current political systems are being tested.

    Just relax and get back to work on workable solutions.

  • E Harwood

    How about starting an on line petition asserting that there can only be one term, and no lobbying for at least 10 years if at all. The only way this will get on a ballot is by getting enough signatures and it sounds like that could happen if this get circulated to enough people.

    I will sign the fisrt signature

    • jfloyd

      looking at all these comments/responses I think getting a petition going should easily fly…& now w/ the internet it should become a shoe-in!….

  • Fpl25

    I have hope that your organization, plus Get Money Out, 99 Declarations, Fiscal IQ, etc. form a coalition of some sort that will become a very, very powerful voice that speaks out in a language that we, the 99%, readily understand, and that would lead to the changes that takes the control of the country out of the hands of the one% and gives it back to the 99%.

  • Ray

    Publicity wise, as an attention grabber, I would have groups of people show up at Congressional appearrances and call to them, waving fistfulls of cash in the air, ‘Congressman, Congressman, we have campaign cash for you, won’t you see us, ‘ hopefully embarrassing the heck out of them……..Ray ( Hollywood , Fl)

  • Stevesgsds

    ALL politicians are LIARS, THIEVES, & SCAM ARTISTS and ALL politicians belong in the same jail cell with Bernie Madoff!

  • PeterTrapanese

    This is a total waste of time on our part here at (RR)! We must figure out a solution that is direct, meaningful, and one that will affect these individuals directly in their pockets/pocketbooks. We will not stop influence peddling simply by asking a thief to no longer steel. Besides, who are we to ask anyone not to better their financial statues in life as long as we the people allow it to go on – legally?

    Yes it is a disgusting abuse of power! And yes it should be stopped. But, unless it is written in such a way before they can accept the position, UNLESS IT IS COMPLETELY UNDERSTOOD BEFORE THEY ACCEPT THE SEAT – there really is no point in trying to stop all this after the fact.

  • Broiled_tigger

    Republic Report better proof the above letter before sending it, otherwise they (Republic Report) along with the thousands that signed the petition will look like idiots. I didn’t even finish reading the letter because of the grammatical errors I found in the first two paragraphs. I absolutely hate what Congress has done to America but, damn, make sure the grandiose petition appears to have come from an educated, well organized source. As is, it appears a fifth grader circulated a petition and struck gold with a couple thousand signatures. Because my hatred of Congress is greater than my hatred for bad grammar I went ahead and signed the petition. BUT SOMEONE PLEASE PROOF THAT LETTER BEFORE IT IS PUT BEFORE ANYONE WITH A IQ HIGHER THAN 60!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Madeline Loder

    Great comments from caring people….you keep me psyched.

  • Sher2446

    It should be illegal to have lobbiests period!

  • Taylor Burns

    It’s time to expose the conflicts of interest and demand that a new system of rules be created for our representatives. Really.

  • Talullah0007

    I have said for years that no person who has worked in any capacity in the Senate or House of Representatives, whether as a member of Congress or as some sort of aid for members, should be allowed to stay in Washington and work after their time is up and they leave their job, either by resigning or being voted out. These people have served their time at the public trough, let them go home and get a real job. We have had too many years of career politicians who are in it for the money they can make when they have made enough ‘friends.’ Unfortunately, I fear it is too late, as they now make their own laws to provide for their own big money futures, but if there is any way to get the permanent politicians out of Washington we must find it and make laws that they are never to set foot in the District of Columbia again in their lives. Probably be hard for them to find jobs, however, as most have never worked at a real job.

  • Cheryl Wynings

    These Congressmen are leaving office so we cant do alot to them like vote them out or demand much from them.

    We need to find out and pressure those in office and staying to stop or be transparent on dealings with lobbyists, or laws controlling lobbyists , or transparency for them. What Congressmen and what companies do we boycott and pressure or vote out or demonsttate against.

    The ones scare me more as they will be making life harder for us while they get kickbacks and rewards while we go under !

    But those leaving also need to be accountable also and I have signed it and will pass it along.

    Cheryl Wynings

  • Wanderlustig1

    I agree completely with Wingerone!

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  • Mjvtz

    the ONLY way to accomplish this is a constitutional amendment curtailing lobbying along with corporate/special interest group contributions to political campaigns .. ASKING retiring congressmen to do something about it ? oh sure ….

  • Clayton Griffith

    Too bad they can’t make it on their self-voted salaries. CVG

  • Organicranger

    How much Rick Santorum made before he was in congress, when he was in congress, afetr he was in congress? How many historians make the money Newt Gingrich makes? Why does Ron Paul keeps running for president? How much money is Sarah Palin making just for running a losing bid?

  • Kathymoi

    Love this. And you can bet that this letter will not get onto the major media news, television, radio, newspaper or magazine. But we can reach a lot of people on the internet. This is long overdue, and only a tiny step in the direction of reform, but it is great. Love this.

  • dan

    I don’t think the letter as above has a hope of getting pledges, so I’m not that interested in signing.

  • Curtisbressler

    Politicians have to be isolated from everything and everyone except the voting population. There should be no monetary perk other than their base salary. Without this simple rule, we have the “Respresentative Democracy” that you see today… absolutely corrupt failure.

  • Most members of Congress are unprincipled and dishonest. The fact that they see no conflict between the obligations of their office and taking contributions from corporate petitioners or accepting employment for the purpose of exploiting their special knowledge and networks speaks volumes for itself. It is willful assault on our democracy and portends our decline as a country and a civilization.

  • Steve Dalton…WV

    Does anyone wonder why we as a country are so screwed up. What makes anyone think these people would tell the truth about anything. They lie about why we go to war. They lie about how our service men and women die. They have lost their concern for the AMERICA that they grew up ion. The only thing they care about is the money they are going to make on the side. How can you trust someone who will take the name of GOD off our money. That has been a pillar that America was born on. They use seperation of church and state when convenient and forget about it when it suits their needs. We will destroy and rebuild another countries buildings and roads to only rebuild them better, while American roads and buildings fall in disrepair. Why? Because if you follow the money you will be shocked at where it ends. When your head man(lol) raises a $1,000,000,000 dollars to fund his campaign and only spends $600,000,000 and then gets to keep the rest while people who have been retrained 3 times still can’t find a job. YOu can’t blame one party because they both do it. They stiffle the chance for a third party candidate to join the fight.
    As a registered INDEPENDENT I am shocked when people like Donald Trump says he is going to run as a Independent because republicans think he is a bad choice. Lieberman lost his primary so he ran as a independent just so he did not have to find a real job.
    I as a Independent would loss my mind if Trump became my parties candidate.
    When banks, Defense contractors and Pharmaceutical companies make the rules this is where we stand. Now Americans can’t even move out of the country because we are hated everywhere in the world.
    Hundreds of people die everyday from gun violence….just not the ones that would help us out of this mess.
    Lets side aside a day for a national holiday and call it….National KIll a Corrupt Politician Day , just think how much celebreating would be going on. We would have to hold a election yearly…enough bitching..GOD BLESS AMERICA

  • Htrdmn

    We need a consitutional amendment outlawing lobbyists.

  • Williamlmx

    Typical American greed. They make the laws, we pay for their abuse.

  • Vtahmasbi163

    do you really think


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  • Constituents (esp non-voters) have a responsibility as well. The next time you research your sample ballot, ask yourselves who can really represent YOU. Find out what their jobs are and have been. Find out how well connected they are at the time of running for office. And insist that your representatives stop hiding behind the Constitution. Our Constitution is not a perfect document. The US was once a time of slavery and a place where women could not vote. That’s one reason we have amendments to the Constitution.

    The right to petition is protected by the Constitution. Nothing to stop us from pushing for an amendment to lessen the power of wealthy lobbying firms.

  • RoamingWolf

    Why, Are We Not looking at this for what it IS, “””Bribery””” article 2 section 4 of the Constitution.

    Section 4 – Disqualification

    The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

  • RoamingWolf

    I think If we could get , a amendment. STATing that If you got funded form winning your Campaign or accept funds from anyone that Your going to be voting on, or too that industry, It shouldnt in the first place be without even stating it here, “Your bias”.
    Be it a Job Promised to you.. is Bribery
    Just like going and serving on jury Duty, IF, you was part of that Trail case, knowing the person, TAKING FUND From one side in any form, way or matter. YOU CAN NOT BE ON THE JURY. So WHY, are they able to vote on LAWS or pass Bills ?

    SO, You can NOT make laws or vote where you have received funds from, over $2500. 00 dollars

  • I think we should not only make it illegal for anyone in Congress to go to work for anyone who lobbied them or that they passed regulation on, but we should also take money out of the elections and that would stop lobbyists and special interest groups from bribing our Congress. I also think that we should start electing the common man and stop electing lawyers.

  • Tired of the corruption

    If there were a law making it mandatory for ALL lobby encounters made public and recorded on video, and for all lobby funds to go directly into the general fund it would cut down on shady lobby tactics and make these “public servants” accountable for their actions. We all know this will never happen (mostly under the guise of “national security and such), but it would put an immediate stop to much of the shady dealings. The law should also make it illegal for any public servant to work for any company that has lobbied any part of government for a period of at least 5 years after leaving office. This too would detour some of this activity.

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  • Rockrosser61

    This is all fine,but its like everything else on the hill.What is going on with the the BASTARDS,our honest politicians we elected who trade,sell and buy stocks when they make laws,that make it legal for them to do some insider trading,some even trading and minipulating the housing debate,WALL STREET.They better start watching whats going on in world,riots can start anywhere,and the rich are going to be hurting,including politicians,and there FAMILIES,RANSOOMS.IF THAT SCARES PEOPLE IT SHOULD!HEY 1%,MILITARY AINT GOING TO HELP YOU,THEY WILL BE THINKING OF THERE FAMILYS,AND BIG $ THEY GET PAYED SO BIG OIL AND THE BIG MILITARY CONSORTIUM.Maybe after putting this out there someone will come and talk to me.

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  • Jim Norman

    Our country is run by the moneyed few. Should there be no well trodden road to riches for ex-Senators and congressmen, our Federal government might not be under the control of corporate interests but responsive to the millions of citizens whose taxes support this travesty of “democratic” rule. In the words of Canadian poet and song-writer Leonard Cohen, “Everybody knows the rich get richer, the poor stay poor. Everybody knows the deal is rotten, Old Black Joe still pickin’ cotton….”. A country of great natural resources, established through the forceful and deceitful appropriation of the lands of its native inhabitants and their systematic slaughter and confinement, has maintained its zeal for ideals that pay lip service to “Liberty” while pursuing wealth and power for the clever fortunate few whose concerns never display any interest in our national commonweal.

  • Cheriklinefelter

    We need to stop all lobbists from buying off our political officials! They are not elected officials anymore when they participate in such criminal activity. They arenot our elected official; but bought and paid off to do what the wealthy in this county want them to do. To hell with the people that elected them. Its all a big scam ..our Gov’t.

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  • Tairyland

    When will we learn that washington folks are there to line their own pockets …not ours…………..!

  • Czrol Gustafson

    Its about time that we get rid of the crooks in congress and stop all their crookedness. So we can return to a real America again. With honest and helpful politicians.

  • Sick of Congress!

    So sad everyone in Congress is a crook!! Both parties are under-handed and crooks because they are allowed to get away with out. Everyone is out for themselves. We live in a very money hungry selfish world that allows this!!

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  • starrider

    Politicians are in the game for power and money. The “Public Service” part is a bunch of crap. We voters allow this greed and corruption and we can end it. Laws and term limits aren’t needed. Just vote them out!!! It’s that simple.

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  • Miker51

    I heard once we shouldn’t hate our gov. we should take it back. But how? How do we get rid of those people that aren’t doing there jobs. Or screwing us or just being too old. This greed in America needs to stop. You never see a armor truck behind a hearst. How do we go fire those assholes? We catch them with there hands in the cookie jar & nothing happens. Why don’t they go to jail like anyone else would? As Steven Seigel says are they above the law? Lets go back in time, start hanging them or firing squad. That might stop the coruption. I know spelled wrong, sorry!

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