Friday, June 04, 2010

legislators: lobbying works because they don't know the law they write

As much as I enjoyed reading a story about how Mike Lee, son of ex-BYU president Rex Lee and beneficiary of millions of Utahns tax dollars for a frivolous lawsuit, was a lobbyist and didn't register as one, this was much more interesting:
"If you go off of your description, I was being persuaded to vote for the bill and I was not persuaded," Liljenquist, R-Bountiful, said Thursday after being read the law. "He came up, he advocated for a bill and he did a good job. ... He met with several people over several days in the Senate lounge." (emphasis added)
That's right, the lawmaker has no idea what the law says about his job. Remember as a lawmaker, your job is to vote on bills/amendments and to write bills and amendments. As a lawmaker, you should also know when someone is improperly trying to persuade you. Of course, I don't expect lawmakers to ask for every dude's papers, but if someone like Mike Lee comes up to you and talks about bill that benefits one particular company (in this case 1-800-CONTACTS), it's because he is a lobbyist, duh.

But wait it gets better:
Retired federal judge Paul Cassell worked in the same capacity, [1-800-Contacts general counsel, Joe] Zeidner said. Cassell didn't register either as a lobbyist.
I think Zeidner could have said that a different way--and may be he did--that didn't seemingly also damn Judge Cassell. That defense of Lee kind of backfired.

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