The New York Times called out President Obama for taking money from donors “who are active in the lobbying industry” in a recent story, noting that he has raised millions towards his re-election campaign with help from these supporters.
The story notes that these aren’t lobbyists per se, but rather “bundlers” who kick in their money and raise funds. Among those mentioned are Sally Susman, EVP of policy, external affairs, and comms at Pfizer, who also leads the company’s lobbying concern, and Michael Kempner, CEO of MWW Group.
According to the article, Kempner has brought in at least half a million dollars for the President. Kempner also served on the President’s White House Council for Community Solutions earlier this year, visiting a number of cities with Jon Bon Jovi. We spoke with Kempner about his activities with the Council. He said of the program, “Our job is to identify programs that are best practices and find commonality among those programs.”
MWW declined comment on the NY Times story.
“The disconnect between Mr. Obama’s public stance on lobbyists and his use of fund-raisers who are active in the lobbying industry rests in part on the ambiguity in the law over who must register as a federal lobbyist,” the Times writes.
[via The New York Times]