Reformers who want to change Washington have their work cut out for them. The confirmation hearings for Tom Daschle provide the latest evidence of that, and it’s not about his taxes. It is about the Beltway influence crowd that is bipartisan, well-connected, and full of former members of Congress.
Glenn Greenwald at Salon tells the story as well as anyone and his latest post cites a comment about the crowded revolving door from Craig Holman of Public Citizen in a Washington Post story about Daschle.
In the 1970s only about 3 percent of retiring members of Congress wound up in K Street law and lobbying firms. These days, the figure is more like 32 percent, [Holman] said, in part fueled by the dramatic increase in pay for such positions.
There’s something to think about, that one-third of the people you elect to the House and Senate are getting on-the-job training for their next career influencing Congress for whoever pays them.