Evidently, the mega-drug companies aren’t the only ones doling out cash in great sums to Congressmen in hopes of buying influence. I suspect a good deal of behind-the scenes hi-jinks by lobbyists tied to legislators and the White House was partly responsible for last night’s passage of the National Uniformity for Food Act, a bill that would eliminate food safety warnings imposed by individual states, in the House.
Moreover, some observers believe the bill was rushed through the House without much discussion. Some interesting facts about the lobbyists who worked behind closed doors to get this House bill passed:
- One lobbyist raised more than $300,000 in political action committee donations for Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), who eventually sponsored the bill.
- A lobbyist for the Food Products Association is the brother of White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card.
- The wife of House Majority Whip Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) worked for Kraft Foods’ parent company Altria as a lobbyist on the bill.
The only good news coming out of this: A more evenly divided Senate may torpedo the measure altogether, based on threats by California Sens. Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein to block it. Fact is, you can’t trust governmental entities who regard the interests of big business — not voters like you and me — as their clients.
San Francisco Chronicle March 9, 2006 Registration Required