The Washington Post's unique genre: 'That pattern we never told you about, of corporate lobbyists favoring Democrats, is ending' 

Dan Eggen, the Washington Post's guy on the lobbying beat, is a good reporter, with a bad habit. He repeatedly writes articles about how some big business lobby is no longer tilting Dem -- without ever having let us know it was tilting Dem in the first place.

The result is a string of stories leaving the same false impression Barack Obama has worked so hard to cultivate (and which Eggen is too dialed-in to buy wholesale) that K Street and big business are decidedly pro-GOP.

Today, Eggen has a piece headlined "With Republican as leader, Obama-friendly Business Roundtable may become less so." Eggen writes:

Engler's appointment suggests a potential shift in emphasis for the Business Roundtable, which represents top corporate executives and had parted ways with the Chamber of Commerce and other major business groups in supporting President Obama's health-care overhaul legislation....

So the Roundtable might be moving to the Right. But Eggen this is the first time Eggen has let us know they ever were "Obama friendly." Eggen and colleague Michael Shear briefly noted in July that the administration has "reached out to other groups, such as the Business Roundtable," never describing the Roundtable's response.

The other time Eggen noted the Business Roundtable: "As head of the Business Roundtable -- an association of chief executives of major U.S. companies -- Castellani has opposed most Democratic legislative initiatives, including the health-care overhaul. But he has managed to do so without alienating adversaries."

Then there was the time Eggen folded the Roundtable into this piece: "Financial, business interests step up lobbying against overhaul bill."

Other items in this Eggen genre include "Wall Street shifting political donations to Republicans" -- because in the fourth quarter of 2009 Wall Street only slightly favored Democrats. Eggen had never let us know about Wall Street's jaw-dropping favoritism towards the Democrats. I reported at the time:

the Securities and Investment Industry, Wall Street, gave 63% of its money to Democrats, improving on the Democrats' majorities from the 2006 and 2008 cycle when Wall Street gave Dems 52% and 57% of campaign cash. In fact, the numbers for the 2010 cycle so far are the most one-sided numbers we've seen from Wall Street as far back as records go.

As gravy, say the top three Wall Street recipients are all Democrats, and 8 of the top 10 are Democrats.

In the end, Democrats raised more from Wall Street than Republicans did. That didn't show up in the Post either, as far as I can tell.

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Timothy P. Carney

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