Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Obama's New Lobbying Rules

As a professor who has taught a class on Lobbying and Ethics for many years, I want to commend President-Elect Barack Obama on the historic new ethics rules for his administration. The President-elect’s record as an ethics and lobbying reformer continued yesterday with his new requirements for members of his transition team and prospective members of his administration. His campaign pledge to change the way Washington works with the lobbying industry became a reality yesterday with the toughest ethics rules of any presidential transition in the history of the United States. His revolving door and gift ban rules for the transition team will help bring trust in government and the way decisions are made in Washington. He shuts the revolving door of lobbyists working on issues in government that they were advocating outside of government. The new ethics rules are great for our democracy. The rules include the following:
  • Federal lobbyists cannot contribute financially to the transition.
  • Federal lobbyists are prohibited from any lobbying during their work with the transition.
  • Lobbyists are prohibited from working in the fields of policy on which they lobbied if they have lobbied in that area in the last 12 months.
  • If someone becomes a lobbyist after working on the transition, they are prohibited from lobbying the administration for 12 months on matters on which they worked.
  • There is a gift ban that is aggressive in reducing the influence of special interests.

In sum, this is a great start for the Obama administration and the renewal of our democracy and the way Washington works.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Blogging from NBC

It is really quiet here in the NBC studio in Washington, DC. Most of the action tonight is in New York... unfortunately, we have no giant ice rink with the electoral map painted on it here.

Along with Professor Thurber one of the experts here tonight is Ken Duberstein, a Republican strategist. He just said, "If Sarah Palin is Cinderella, it's just about to strike midnight for her."

Also, off camera he was just told that NBC is calling Ohio for Obama. His response: it's over.

I am actually surprised that it is taking so long for the networks to call this thing...

Live on NBC

Professor Thurber is in the NBC studio tonight in Washington, DC, sitting at the anchor desk with Pete Williams. I am here too, providing research assistance and election analysis as needed.