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Saturday, July 23, 2016

The Business Dudes Abide

A few months ago, Rich Galen wrote:
No less than T.E. Lawrence, known to us as Lawrence of Arabia, learned a hard lesson after World War I. He thought he and his Arab allies had created a new order in the Middle East. But, he wrote in Seven Pillars of Wisdom:
"When we achieved, and the new world dawned, the old men came out again and took our victory to re-make in the likeness of the former world they knew We stammered that we had worked for a new heaven and a new earth, and they thanked us kindly and made their peace."
Nicholas Confessore reports at The New York Times:
Though Mr. Trump promises to topple Washington’s “rigged system,” the opening rounds of his party’s quadrennial meeting accentuated a more enduring maxim: Money always adapts to power.

At a downtown barbecue joint, lobbyists cheerfully passed out stickers reading “Make Lobbying Great Again” as they schmoozed on Monday with Republican ambassadors, lawmakers and executives. At a windowless bar tucked behind the Ritz-Carlton hotel, whose rooms were set aside for the party’s most generous benefactors, allies of Mr. Trump pitched a clutch of receptive party donors on contributing to a pro-Trump “super PAC.”

And on Tuesday night, as Republican delegates formally made Mr. Trump their presidential nominee, a few dozen lobbyists and their clients instead sipped gin and munched on Brie puffs in an oak-paneled room at the Union Club. They had come to witness a more urgent presentation: Newt Gingrich, a top Trump adviser and Beltway fixture, painting an upbeat picture of the deals they could help sculpt on infrastructure projects and military spending in the first hundred days of a Trump administration.

“It is the business of Washington,” said Michael J. Anderson, a Democratic lobbyist who represents American Indian tribes, after watching Mr. Gingrich speak. “Mr. Trump is talking about changing the paradigm. It’s not changing one bit. The political and influence class is going on as before.”
Joel Fox writes at Fox and Hounds:
From the business perspective is the top two primary working out as hoped? Looking at the lineup of 28 same party run-offs, mostly Democratic contests in this heavily Democratic state, business can advocate for and help fund the more business-friendly Democrat in each race.
Yet, in many cases the winning Democrat will stay true to the overall Democratic Party line. In most cases, but not all. A highlighted example, the debate recently over cutting gasoline consumption saw some Democrats ignore the pleas of their party’s governor and legislative leaders to the satisfaction of the oil industry and other businesses.
Business leaders appear resigned to looking for the “best” Democrat.
A well-known example played out when former Assembly Republican leader Kristin Olsen made it known she was interested in challenging Democratic incumbent Cathleen Galgiani for the 5th Senatorial District. Business interests felt Galgiani was a good enough vote in the senate. The business groups let the state Republican Party know it’s wishes and in turn the party refused to help Olson with financial support for her campaign. Resigned, Olsen chose to run for supervisor in Stanislaus County.