Posts Tagged ‘Washington Post’
Thursday, November 21st, 2013 by Vbhotla
AT FIRST GLANCE, online gambling seems a no-brainer for the gaming industry. Casino magnate Sheldon Adelson disagrees. The Washington Post reports that Adelson, one of the world’s richest men, is launching a public campaign against it, even as the wind appears to be blowing in the other direction. Three states—Delaware, Nevada, and New Jersey—have already legalized it, and the Post expects that a dozen more will soon follow. Further, The Hill notes that the American Gaming Association has thrown its full support behind it.
If federally legalized, online gambling is projected to generate more than 50 billion dollars in revenue, why, then, is Adelson so adamantly against what would appear to be a lucrative business for the gaming industry? The reason, it seems, is at least partly ideological. Per Forbes, he is pushing the idea that Internet gambling is a danger to both children and gambling addicts, and according to The Post, he is passionate about the issue.
Is he likely to succeed, despite staunch opposition from the AGA? It’s probably too early to tell, but Adelson’s influence isn’t being taken lightly. The Hill reports that gaming industry leaders convened in Washington this past Tuesday to establish a strategy to counter his crusade. The industry’s concern isn’t without reason: Adelson donated a record-breaking $100 million to GOP candidates in the 2012 election cycle, and the Washington Post reports that he has hired Patton Boggs and Husch Blackwell to lobby in favor of an online gambling ban. He has also upped the ante by hiring several prominent former politicians to co-chair his anti-Internet gambling coalition, including former Denver Mayor Wellington Webb (D), former Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.), and former New York governor George Pataki (R).
Although it’s anyone’s guess whether Adelson’s all-in effort will succeed, his wealth and determination against a united AGA means that the lobbying fight over online gambling has more than just a few more rounds of bets.
Tags: Blanche Lincoln, Forbes, George Pataki, husch blackwell, Patton Boggs, Sheldon Adelson, the hill, Washington Post, Wellington Webb
Posted in Lobbying News | Comments Off on A Casino Divided: Adelson, AGA Split on Online Gambling
Thursday, March 28th, 2013 by Geoffrey Lyons
LET THE LOBBYING commence in D.C., where administrators are proposing parking regulations that are distressing food truck vendors. According to the Washington Post:
The regulations, which require D.C. Council approval to become law, offer a two-tiered system in which food trucks would still be allowed to sell from any legal parking space , as long as they follow the posted time limits. But truck operators would also be able to apply for a permit for a specially designated spot that would allow them to vend from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The city has also proposed “mobile roadway vending” zones in the more crowded areas. “The zones were offered as a way to alleviate congestion and prevent fights among vendors for prime parking spots.” The best bite-size primer is offered by the Young & Hungry blog at Washington City Paper:
As a refresher: The proposed regulations call for 23 mobile vending zones throughout the city where limited numbers of food trucks would be allowed to sell food. Each zone would have a minimum of three parking spots; the cap is still unknown. A monthly lottery system would determine who got the spots for each weekday, and those who don’t win zoned locations would have to park at least 500 feet away from the zones. In the central business district, mobile vendors would also be limited to metered parking spots with less than 10 feet of unobstructed sidewalk.
So how will all of this affect mobile vendors? It will render them immobile, and thereby obsolete. At least that’s what Doug Povich, Chairman of the Food Truck Association, avers. “You’ve effectively taken away our ability to roam and meet demand,” said Povich “You’ve effectively turned us into stationary roadway vendors.” The D.C. Food Truck Association’s homepage blares, “Proposed Food Truck Regulations Would Make Food Trucks Illegal in Most of Downtown.”
The blame is flatly laid upon the District’s restaurant association, which the vendors believe wants to “flatten the tires of these “mobile interlopers” [who are] stealing their customers and cluttering their sidewalks.” (The Washington Examiner calls the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington the food truck vendor’s “natural foe.”)
Since the D.C. Council cannot amend the proposed rules, those who fear for their business have no option but to lobby for a ‘No’ vote. A map of would-be affected zones can be found here.
Tags: D.C. Food Truck Association, Doug Povich, lobby, Lobbying, lobbyist, Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, the Food Truck Association, The Washington Examiner, Washington Post, Young & Hungry
Posted in Lobbying News | Comments Off on A Brawl Brewing Over D.C. Food Trucks
Tuesday, November 27th, 2012 by Geoffrey Lyons
GROVER NORQUIST, founder and president of Americans for Tax Reform and one of the most influential lobbyists in Washington, is receiving a deluge of press. This is most broadly because fear of a fiscal cliff is revitalizing debate around the feasibility of Norquist’s Taxpayer Protection Pledge, which commits signatories to “oppose any and all efforts” to raise taxes and curb deductions. 238 current House members and 41 Senators have signed the pledge.
But it’s also because of public renunciations by a few notable signatories – Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) and Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga), and Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) – all of whom have either hinted at or openly committed to reneging. This has provoked a torrent of speculation about the future of Norquist’s clout, mixed with some intra-party mudslinging in which Norquist himself has played no small part. (See the Atlantic’s “Timeline of GOP Snubs of the No-Tax-Raise-Pledge”).
Finally, Warren Buffet’s provocative Op-ed in the New York Times on Sunday opened with this:
“Suppose that an investor you admire and trust comes to you with an investment idea. ‘This is a good one,’ he says enthusiastically. ‘I’m in it, and I think you should be, too.’ Would your reply possibly be this? ‘Well, it all depends on what my tax rate will be on the gain you’re saying we’re going to make. If the taxes are too high, I would rather leave the money in my savings account, earning a quarter of 1 percent.’ Only in Grover Norquist’s imagination does such a response exist.” (Norquist responded by calling this argument “silly”)
Here’s what other notable voices are saying:
“So far, the renunciations of Grover Norquist’s “Taxpayer Protection Pledge”amount to a trickle, not a flood. But we’re seeing the first signs in years that on the question of taxation — one of the fundamental responsibilities of government — the GOP may be starting to recover its senses.” – Washington Post (Eugene Robinson)
“I think Republican leaders who can find a sensible, rational way to defend a break in the pledge stand plenty to gain. After all, their oaths of office were made to their country. They should do what they deem fiscally sound for their constituents, not make decisions based on fear of a bespectacled man who has called Republicans who vote for a tax increase “rat heads in a Coke bottle.” – Washington Post (Jenna McGregor)
“By any standard other than the absurdly high one he has set himself, though, Mr Norquist continues to dominate Washington’s tax debate. Almost all revenue-raising proposals hinge on eliminating deductions, rather than raising marginal rates. If Mr Obama does succeed in raising the income-tax rate for the richest, it will have taken him two elections and all manner of fiscal face-offs and crises to get his way—and success is still far from assured. Even scrapping an economically nonsensical subsidy for ethanol, it seems, is still a highly controversial move. Grover is not over yet.” – The Economist
“This is where Mr. Norquist can give some ground. If taxes are going up anyway because the Bush rates expire, and Republicans can stop them from going up as much as they otherwise would, then pledge-takers deserve some credit for that. Mr. Norquist says it violates his pledge to eliminate deductions without lowering rates, but at the current economic and political moment it is also a service if Republicans prevent tax rates from going up. Speaker John Boehner deserves some leeway to try to mitigate the damage by negotiating a larger tax reform.” – The Wall Street Journal
Tags: americans for tax reform, bob corker, eugene robinson, grover, Grover Norquist, lindsey graham, Lobbying, lobbyist, norquist, saxby chambliss, tax reform, taxpayer protection pledge, the economist, the wall street journal, warren buffet, Washington Post
Posted in Lobbying News | Comments Off on Super Lobbyist Norquist is Talk of the Town
Tuesday, June 7th, 2011 by Vbhotla
HLOGA was birthed out of a desire to decrease corruption in politics by increasing the ethical standard to which lobbyists, in their dealings with elected officials, were held. While some of the reporting requirements are cumbersome, most lobbyists agree with being held to an ethical standard, because most lobbyists are not doing anything questionable. Anything to “remove the red ‘L’ from our lapels,” as American League of Lobbyists executive director Gina Bancroft put it. Here are some cues to follow to make sure that even if the current laws don’t cover it, your actions are ethical and you are in good shape to continue lobbying successfully in the long-term:
1) Visceral reaction – What is your gut telling you? If you’re calling on counsel, because it just doesn’t feel right, it might be because it’s not. Sometimes your stomach indicates more than indigestion.
2) The Washington Post test – Will this land you in the Washington Post (or other publication)? If so, in what light could it be portrayed? A negative story, whether the actions detailed are against the law or not, will affect business.
3) Try to separate lobbying from campaign donations. Discussing issues at fundraisers or while dropping off an envelope of campaign donations is not unethical, but it is distasteful. Avoid the appearance of impropriety: talk about family, hunting, the Nats/Caps (the Skins/Wizards might just make people angry), vacations, or anything else that is not relative to either of your jobs.
Tags: campaign donations, fundraisers, HLOGA, lobbying at fundraisers, lobbying code of ethics, Washington Post
Posted in Ethics Tip | Comments Off on Ethics Tuesday: Beyond Laws and Codes