High cost of access
Government in America is the best money can buy.
Would you like to get together occasionally with President Obama, do a little schmoozing and perhaps lobby for that ambassadorial appointment you've always wanted?
It won't be cheap.
President Obama has reorganized his campaign re-election team into Organizing for Action, a full-time advocacy group that will lobby for adoption of his second-term agenda. That will cost money, and Obama aides figure one place they can get it is from financially flush Obama supporters who will pay up for private time with the nation's chief executive.
The New York Times reports that the reward for either giving or raising (getting other people to give) $500,000 or more is quarterly meetings with the president as well as the privilege of attending other meetings at the White House. The Times also reports that many of those expected to give "are angling for appointments to administration jobs or ambassadorships."
How times have changed. President Lincoln used to see regular folks who wanted a word with him. President Clinton goosed that strategy by trading nights in the Lincoln bedroom for campaign contributions. Now Obama is selling time with him at $500,000 a pop.
Those who resent this kind of big-money influence are not happy about the president's fundraising plan. Common Cause President Bob Edgar said it "just smells."
Edgar ought to look on the bright side. Just think how much worse the Obama fundraising plan would be if the president wasn't opposed to having big money affecting our politics.