“A couple of years ago, National Journal analyzed the number of family members of sitting senators who were working as lobbyists. Fully thirty-three senators had family members who were registered as lobbyists or who worked for lobbying firms. That’s one-third of the United States Senate.

As Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma has put it: “Many legislators and their staffs have children or spouses who are or have been employed as lobbyists including many of the most powerful members and leaders of the Senate. Yet, no rules or laws currently prevent lawmakers or their staffs from being lobbied by relatives. Neither lawmakers nor lobbyists must report if they are related to each other.  Add to the list of laws and regulations that don’t apply to Congress: rules against nepotism.

Dennis Hastert has a son who had been managing a record store in Illinois before Representative Hastert became Speaker of the House Hastert. When his father took the gavel, the son became a well-paid lobbyist in Washington. Senator Trent Lott’s son, who was managing Domino’s Pizza franchises before going to Washington, also made great money by becoming a lobbyist on the side.”

Excerpt From: Schweizer, Peter. “Throw Them All Out.” Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (www.hmhco.com). iBooks.

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