Organizers of the 2008 Republican and Democratic conventions are openly soliciting seven-figure payments from corporations and lobbyists in return for valuable access to lawmakers, the Washington Post reports. The access peddling comes at precisely the moment Congress is trying to limit the influence of lobbyists at conventions with tighter ethics legislation.
The bill is likely to be signed into law by President Bush. "The last thing Congress did before the break is pass lobbying reform that included a provision limiting the parties that can be thrown at these conventions," said a citizens advocate. "That would suggest that they didn't mean it, which will really come as a surprise to no one."