My blog post yesterday on the Tiffany-Gingrich connections got a lot of Twitter attention today. There were two details:
1) That Gingrich's old floor staffer is a lobbyist representing Tiffany's (first reported by me)
2) Tiffany's was lobbying agencies overseen by House Ag at the time Callista Gingrich was on House Ag (first reported by SpyTalk).
Let me note point (1) doesn't suggest anything improper to me. It does suggest a closeness between the company and the Gingriches. Point (2), on the surface, is more troubling.
Today, Gingrich's people passed along a statement from Tiffany's, reproduced in whole, below:
Tiffany's lobbying efforts have been focused on the reform of the General Mining Law of 1872 (to fairly compensate taxpayers for metals extracted from public lands and to better protect the environment from the impact of hard rock mining) and the clean-up of abandoned mines. We had no reason to lobby the Agriculture Committee and we did not. Nor did anyone at Tiffany & Co. (or Cassidy & Associates on behalf of Tiffany) ever speak to Speaker Gingrich or Mrs. Gingrich about either of these matters. Our focus has been on the Natural Resources Committee which has jurisdiction over these matters. The one and only meeting with the Forest Service on the matter of Mining Law reform was in response to an invitation by Dale Bosworth, Chief of the Forest Service, as a result of our Open Letter to him in the Washington Post that appeared on March 24, 2004.
To re-iterate, there is nothing unusual or extraordinary about the credit extended to Speaker Gingrich. Last year, Tiffany & Co. extended credit to over 1,000 customers on identical terms.