Government

Inside Washington's Money Machine

Everybody wants some.
Phil Dokas/Flickr

On today's show, we go inside the rooms in Washington where the daily grind of campaign finance — Congressmen, lobbyists, money — takes place. At least, we try to go inside the rooms. Several times.

And we talk to Jimmy Williams, a former lobbyist now working on campaign finance reform. He describes what it's like to meet with a Congressman when you're a lobbyist and your PAC hasn't been donating to the Congressman.

[The Congressman] said, "I have put in two calls to your PAC director and I haven't received any returned phone calls. Now why am I taking this meeting?" And he held up a piece of paper with my PAC director's name highlighted in yellow on it with the dates and the times that he had called her to ask her for a campaign donation, and she hadn't returned his call ... He has warned me that if I don't ... [contribute] to his campaign, then he's not going to help my guys.

For More: Check out Party Time, a blog from the Sunlight Foundation that tracks political fundraisers.

Share Your Fundraiser Story: If you are a Washington insider, we want to hear from you. Email us or leave a message at 202.371.1775.

Subscribe to the podcast. Music: José González's "Down The Line." Find us: Twitter/ Facebook/Spotify

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

Support comes from: