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Wednesday, September 2, 2009

How a congressman brings business to K Street

Congress is pushing a bill to get the federal government in the business of promoting travel to the U.S. My column tells the twisted back-story of this legislation:
In 2005 Rep. Bill Delahunt, a Democrat who represents Cape Cod, addressed the Washington Summit of the Travel Business Roundtable, and urged it to lobby more. Fed News reported, "The Congressman called on the industry to wage a more aggressive, bipartisan campaign."
It's not every day that a lawmaker issues a clarion call for more lobbying, so the industry obliged with enthusiasm. The Travel Business Roundtable registered as a lobbying organization in 2006, changed its name to the Discover America Partnership, and hired Steven Schwadron, Delahunt's longtime chief of staff, as its K Street lobbyist. Nobody can say Delahunt doesn't take care of his employees.
Delahunt this year sponsored HR 2935, the Travel Promotion Act

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