Did you know that there are 535 voting members of our Congress and about 22.5 lobbyists per member…all of which have suitcases full of cash waiting to give to our members?
Now that rings up an interesting thought…at least in my mind….is that cash given to the members of Congress a bribe?
First what constitutes bribery?
Bribery refers to the offering, giving, soliciting, or receiving of any item of value as a means of influencing the actions of an individual holding a public or legal duty. This type of action results in matters that should be handled objectively being handled in a manner best suiting the private interests of the decision maker. Bribery constitutes a crime and both the offeror and the recipient can be criminally charged.
Proof of bribery requires demonstrating a “quid pro quo” relationship in which the recipient directly alters behavior in exchange for the gift. Because the relationship does not occur directly enough, campaign donations from corporations or individuals to political candidates do not constitute bribery. (Why the Hell not?)
I have made my thoughts on this corruption for years…..
Lobbyists–The New Anti-Christ
Lobbyists: Scourge Of The Hill
Why are these people given a pass on bribery charges?
Lobbyists are professional advocates that work to influence political decisions on behalf of individuals and organizations. This advocacy could lead to the proposal of new legislation, or the amendment of existing laws and regulations. However, a lobbyist is prohibited from paying a politician to secure his or her vote on these matters.
Members of the lobbying industry have the task of representing clients — including corporations, trade groups and nonprofit organizations — and advocating on their behalf in the nation’s capital.
The relationship between lobbyists and lawmakers is complicated. On one hand, lobbyists pursue relationships with lawmakers in order to shape legislation so that it benefits clients who would be affected by new laws or regulations. On the other hand, lobbyists are frequently targeted by lawmakers as sources of campaign money, which the lobbyists feel beholden to give to improve their clients’ prospects of success.
Congresspeople make millions from people influencers….it is straight forward in my book…..
Corporations own this country and the lawmakers….so the people have very little power over the direction of this country….simply because they do not have the cash to get Congress to act on important issues that benefit the people of this country.
So is ‘lobbying’ a corrupt practice and is their ‘donation’ really just bribes hiding behind some obscure rule of thumb?
Cut any way you like to my mind it is simple….it is bribery and should be banned from the halls of Congress.
I Read, I Write, You Know
“lego ergo scribo”
4 thoughts on “Is It Bribery?”
When does ‘expenses’ constitute bribery? In my mind, always.
Like the free trips, the free lunches and dinners, the fees for consultancy and public speaking, the free products, and the ‘influence’. Even without the presence of bundles of cash, bribery keeps on rolling on.
Best wishes, Pete.
THe corporate owners of Congress just keeps throwing money to influence….and that is bribery by any stretch of the imagination. chuq
Good points all, chuq. I need to review the lobbying laws. I think the “giving” of money to Congress “players” is limited to campaign.. like PACs. Even then there are dollar amount limitations as I recall. I also have something in my mind about “gifts” from lobbyists and the fancy junkets. As to whether the voting Congress is actually accepting full-out bribes under the table, I am unsure how much of that still goes on given all the watchdogging going on and the legal consequences if discovered. This kinda goes hand-in-hand with that elusive campaign financing reform bill that seems to get sidelined.
Any money given is a bit of a bribe……it buys influence…..and that gives the big donors more say that the voter. chuq