« Wasserman Schultz reveals breast cancer battle | Main | Decades ago, a Floridian chased a financial crisis »

Legislators create lucrative circle of influence when their paid consultants lobby

The unlimited special-interest cash streaming into Florida legislators' political accounts has enriched a small group of influential consultants who received $19.5 million from political committees and campaigns in the 2008 election cycle.

The torrent of money flowing through the Capitol has also fueled an industry of consultants who lobby.

Of the 60 highest-paid consultants for lawmakers' committees, at least 12 work as lobbyists, according to a Herald/Times analysis. The consultant-lobbyists are hired by corporations to influence the same legislators who pay them for political help.

This circular network ties together special interests, lobbyists and lawmakers in a tight web of money and insider access. The lobbying clients seek legislative help. The legislators seek cash, for reelection or pet causes. The common link: the consultant. Read more here. 

Read list of lobbyist/consultants here:

12 political consultants who lobby

Lobbyist,
party affiliation
Amount received No. of clients Notable
client
Roger Pennington, Rep. $2.1 million 1 Municipal Electric Assoc.
Christian Ulvert, Dem. $522,290 9 Dosal Tobacco
Bill Helmich, Rep. $297,100 9 Miami-Dade County
Joe Perry, Dem. $209,744 2 FCCI Insurance
Esther Nuhfer, Rep. $201,618 1 Evidence-based Assoc.
Bridget Gregory Nocco, Rep. $181,973 4 U.S. Sugar
Todd Richardson, Rep. $126,006 2 Altria
Amber Stoner, Rep. $116,026 1 HCA Healthcare
Jerry Wayne Bertsch, Rep. $55,417 1 American Cancer Society
Randy Enwright, Rep. $52,983 7 AT&T
Thomas Grigsby, Rep. $23,764 3 Florida State Fraternal Order of Police
Screven Watson, Dem. $22,644 4 U.S. Sugar
Total $3,937,779

Source: Division of Elections data for 2007-08

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Cynical Idealist

The media focuses on $2.1 million as though Rockie took it all home. He didn't.

Why not do the extra leg work and find out what he paid to the mail houses, printers, tv/radio stations and newspapers that he bought air time and advertising from?

The press focuses on the money when you really ought to focus on getting people involved in campaigns and the legislative process.

If you did that, there would be no need for consultants and/or lobbyists.

But, then, that'd mean the people are informed and they wouldn't need the press.

I submit it isn't the influence of lobbyists, consultants or money that is the problem in "politics," but rather the failure of the press to go beyond what they perceive as their job (that malarkey about shining a light on government) and live up to their high ideals of making this a better place to live (by getting people to actively participate in politics)

Face it, the press wants to have their cake (sell papers by sowing conflict and playing "gotcha" journalism) and eat it, too (keeping the people disinterested in the political process so people will leave it to the press to report on what occurs rather than be involved themselves).

Cynical Idealist

The media focuses on $2.1 million as though Rockie took it all home. He didn't.

Why not do the extra leg work and find out what he paid to the mail houses, printers, tv/radio stations and newspapers that he bought air time and advertising from?

The press focuses on the money when you really ought to focus on getting people involved in campaigns and the legislative process.

If you did that, there would be no need for consultants and/or lobbyists.

But, then, that'd mean the people are informed and they wouldn't need the press.

I submit it isn't the influence of lobbyists, consultants or money that is the problem in "politics," but rather the failure of the press to go beyond what they perceive as their job (that malarkey about shining a light on government) and live up to their high ideals of making this a better place to live (by getting people to actively participate in politics)

Face it, the press wants to have their cake (sell papers by sowing conflict and playing "gotcha" journalism) and eat it, too (keeping the people disinterested in the political process so people will leave it to the press to report on what occurs rather than be involved themselves).

The comments to this entry are closed.