MARCH 13, 2009
Proclaiming it’s in the public’s interest, President Barack Obama has again violated his own lobbyist ban by issuing “ethics waivers” to bring two more aboard including a high-ranking La Raza official.
Repeatedly blowing off his campaign promise to ban lobbyists from his administration, the president has actually stacked his coveted roster with them. This week he added two more with a pair of executive ethics waivers explaining that the candidates have unequalled qualifications.
Cecilia Munoz, senior vice president of the National Council of La Raza, will be Obama’s director of intergovernmental affairs and Jocelyn Frye, general counsel at the National Partnership for Women & Families, will be director of policy and projects in the Office of the First Lady.
At the pro illegal immigration National Council of La Raza Munoz supervised all legislative and advocacy activities on the state and local levels and she was heavily involved in the congressional immigration battles in recent years. At the equally leftist National Partnership for Women & Families Frye directed a program that focuses on gender discrimination of minority women.
In announcing the latest waivers, the White House reminded Americans that Obama’s first official act upon taking office was to sign the ethics executive order establishing some of the toughest ethics rules ever imposed on executive branch appointees. Because those rules are so stringent, the White House announcement says, it’s important to have reasonable exceptions in case of exigency or when the public’s interest so demands.
So far there have been at least a dozen so-called “reasonable exceptions” in which lobbyists have been appointed to high-profile positions in the administration, including the cabinet. Among the registered lobbyists working in Obama’s White House is an attorney general who lobbied on behalf of a bankrupt telecommunications firm, a deputy defense secretary who lobbied for a defense contractor and a domestic policy advisor who lobbied for liberal advocacy groups like the American Civil Liberties Union.
So much for Obama’s fiery campaign rhetoric that lobbyists “won’t find a job in my White House.”
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