Keeping the Corruption Alive

A story in yesterday's Washington Post takes us behind the scenes of a lobbyist effort to skew the democratic process. Those familiar with North Carolina's 8th District Congressman Robin Hayes won't be surprised to hear that—once again—he buckled under pressure and sold his constituents up the river.

WASHINGTON — Lobbyist Jack Abramoff and his team were beginning to panic.

An anti-gambling bill had cleared the Senate and appeared on its way to passage by an overwhelming margin in the House of Representatives. If that happened, Abramoff's client, a company that wanted to sell state lottery tickets online, would be out of business.

But on July 17, 2000, the Internet Gambling Prohibition Act went down to defeat, to the astonishment of supporters who included many anti-gambling groups and Christian conservatives.

Many on the right wanted the bill to pass, but when lobbyist and DeLay crony Jack Abramoff began to politically smear Republican representatives—including Hayes—in their own districts, the representatives crumbled and sold out their constituency. Hayes ended up voting to kill the bill. Read the article to find out how a crooked Republican lobbyist got between the people of the 8th district and their Congressman.

Way to show some backbone there, Hayes.