Disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff says in a forthcoming 60 Minutes interview (leaked this morning to Playbook) he doesn't think Congresses new ethics reforms will do much from stopping lobbyists like him from skirting the law. But, of course, listening to Abramoff, who was released after serving prison time for fraud and public corruption convictions, talk about lobbying loopholes seems a bit like hearing disgraced referee Tim Donaghy talk about the shortcomings of NBA basketball: he may be making a point, but also might have an agenda to point to a systemic failure. Abramoff said his lobbying firm influenced 100 members of Congress. From CBS News:
Though he says he now regrets using cash and gifts to buy influence in Congress - among the crimes that landed him in prison for over three years - could he still do the same thing today despite new ethics laws? "Yeah... the system hasn't been cleaned up at all," he tells [interviewer Lesley] Stahl. "There's an arrogance on the part of lobbyists...that no matter what they come up with...we'll just find another way through."
- Politics & Government
- Jack Abramoff