‘Lobbyist’ isn’t a dirty word

April 05, 2010

I think that the characterization of the lobbyist occupation as "dirty" is unfair (Debate on dirty word: 'lobbyist,'" April 4). Lobbyists play an important role in our political process. Their advocacy on behalf of a client's of a point of view on pending legislation and on needed legislative changes serves a valuable role in the process of deliberating new and existing laws in our society. There are always many points of view, and for interested parties to hire a spokesperson on their behalf who has access to law makers is not "dirty" at all.

What is "dirty," in my opinion, is when our elected representatives take money from lobbyists for election campaign support, take boondoggle trips to exotic locations under the guise of a seminar and the like, and in general promise a quid pro quo arrangement with the lobbying firms in return for special consideration on matters which benefit the lobbying entity. It is this special relationship that corrupts the political process and leads to the general opinion within the body politic that lobbyist are "dirty."

We as citizens must insist that our elected representatives cease and desist from the despicable practice of accepting favors and money in return for special treatment in the legislative process.

Sam Davis, Towson

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