The Super Committee that's working on some sort of deficit agreement is operating on a very tight timetable, with a Thanksgiving deadline looming to forestall the "trigger cuts" that are embedded in the legislation that created it. So, for all involved, it's a lot of work that needs to get done in a short amount of time. But while it's uncertain whether the committee members are up to the task, one thing remains true: no one in Washington feels the fierce urgency of now more than our lobbyist friends. Per Eric Lichtblau, of the New York Times:
[Senator Patrick]Toomey, a Republican from Pennsylvania, and the other 11 lawmakers on a special Congressional committee are weighing $1.2 trillion in debt reductions. They are suddenly among the most popular people in town, with lobbyists and executives from powerful interest groups angling to schedule meetings, distribute checks at fund-raisers and deliver petitions to influence their work.
“If you’re not at the table,” Manuel Rouvelas, a prominent Washington lawyer, said of the lobbying blitz, “you’re on the menu.”
Who's "at the table?" Well, according to this report, you have "Ethanol fuel producers, oil companies, corporate jet owners...private equity firms and hedge funds...real estate insiders...[a]nd advocates for the elderly." So, who's "on the menu?" I'm going to go with, 'mostly poor people.'
Lichtblau reports that various "watchdog groups" have beseeched the committee members to suspend their fundraising activities during the time they are serving on the Super Committee, but, as they say in politics, "Ha ha ha, that's a good one."
READ THE WHOLE THING:
Lobbyists Line Up to Sway Special Committee [New York Times]
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