A new report from Public Citizen and the Center for Responsive Politics sheds new light on the incredible scale of the financial sector’s lobbying effort. The report has found that the sector employs over 1400 former lawmakers and Congressional staffers.
Last month, we issued a report on the big bank lobby in collaboration with the Campaign for America’s Future. “Big Bank Takeover” identified more than 240 revolving door lobbyists working for one of the six major banks and their principal lobbies.
But expand the scope to include other banks, private equity firms, hedge funds, accounting firms, credit unions, and so on, and the number grows much, much larger. Wikipedia research shows that the number of revolving door lobbyists employed by the industry as a whole is literally larger than the number of soldiers that typically constitute a battalion. This is what the public interest is up against.
Here’s what Public Citizen’s David Arkush had to say about the effect of having so many well-connected lobbyists fighting for the financial industry:
“These people are influential because they have personal relationships with current members and staff. It’s hard to say no to your friends, but that’s what Congress needs to do. Listening to them would result in a bill that would fail to get the job done and would disappoint the American people.”