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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Lobbying can be sordid, but it's not a crime

Kevin Ring is only the second associate of jailed lobbyist Jack Abramoff to go to trial. My column today takes his side (sort of):
Ring, no doubt, played a crooked game, and he was paid well for playing it ruthlessly. He showered lawmakers and their staffs with concert and basketball tickets and other gifts, then got what he wanted from those same public officials. The government argues this makes Ring a "corruptor." The government's presumption is that Congress was not already corrupt, or at least not waiting to have its palm greased, before Ring came calling.

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