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Great article on the 631 Bush cronies paying for Bush's campaign

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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 07:37 PM
Original message
Great article on the 631 Bush cronies paying for Bush's campaign
Building War Chest With Few Restraints

GREENSBORO, Ga. -- Joined by President Bush, Vice President Cheney and a host of celebrities, hundreds of wealthy Republicans gathered at the Ritz-Carlton Lodge here in the first weekend in April, not for a fundraiser but for a celebration of fundraisers. It was billed as an "appreciation weekend," and there was much to appreciate.

As Bush "Pioneers" who had raised at least $100,000 each for the president's reelection campaign, or "Rangers" who had raised $200,000 each, the men and women who shot skeet with Cheney, played golf with pros Ben Crenshaw and Fuzzy Zoeller and laughed at the jokes of comedian Dennis Miller are the heart of the most successful political money operation in the nation's history. Since 1998, Bush has raised a record $296.3 million in campaign funds, giving him an overwhelming advantage in running against Vice President Al Gore and now Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.). At least a third of the total -- many sources believe more than half -- was raised by 631 people.

When four longtime supporters of George W. Bush in 1998 developed a name and a structure for the elite cadre that the then-Texas governor would rely on in his campaign for president, the goal was simple. They wanted to escape the restraints of the public financing system that Congress had hoped would mitigate the influence of money in electing a president. Their way to do it was to create a network of people who could get at least 100 friends, associates or employees to give the maximum individual donation allowed by law to a presidential candidate: $1,000.

The Pioneers have evolved from an initial group of family, friends and associates willing to bet on putting another Bush in the White House into an extraordinarily organized and disciplined machine. It is now twice as big as it was in 2000 and fueled by the desire of corporate CEOs, Wall Street financial leaders, Washington lobbyists and Republican officials to outdo each other in demonstrating their support for Bush and his administration's pro-business policies.

"This is the most impressive, organized, focused and disciplined fundraising operation I have ever been involved in," declared Dirk Van Dongen, president of the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors, who has been raising money for GOP candidates since 1980. "They have done just about everything right."

For achieving their fundraising goals, Pioneers receive a relatively modest token, the right to buy a set of silver cuff links with an engraved Lone Star of Texas (Rangers can buy a more expensive belt). Their real reward is entree to the White House and the upper levels of the administration.

Of the 246 fundraisers identified by The Post as Pioneers in the 2000 campaign, 104 -- or slightly more than 40 percent -- ended up in a job or an appointment. A study by The Washington Post, partly using information compiled by Texans for Public Justice, which is planning to release a separate study of the Pioneers this week, found that 23 Pioneers were named as ambassadors and three were named to the Cabinet: Donald L. Evans at the Commerce Department, Elaine L. Chao at Labor and Tom Ridge at Homeland Security. At least 37 Pioneers were named to postelection transition teams, which helped place political appointees into key regulatory positions affecting industry.


http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A29142-20...
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indepat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 07:40 PM
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1. Do the 631 not realize what they have wrought, or do they not care?
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 07:46 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. They only care that their taxes went down
Ending the inheritance tax gave them the illusion they could take their wealth with them when they die.

That's all they care about. They don't care about the country.
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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 09:15 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. You said it. They don't care about this country.
Not an ounce of noblese oblige among them.
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LittleApple81 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 07:40 PM
Response to Original message
2. CRIMINALS ALL OF THEM! Off with their money! Off with their
money! (because I don't want to say Off with their heads).
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loudsue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 07:51 PM
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4. Why does this turn my stomach?
Because these imbeciles have helped destroy our country, that's why.

:kick:

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T Roosevelt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 07:54 PM
Response to Original message
5. Cross posting Spheres of Influence
I started another thread in GD, but it applies here as well...

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/politics/pioneers/...
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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 09:23 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. Put the two articles together and you come up with a road map for
a wasp-based mafia organization.

How obvious can they get? They said in the article that the people who are Pioneers are buying access. Hello, America, are you listening? The wealthy people in this country are BUYING ACCESS TO THE WHITE HOUSE. Do I need to make this simpler? IT'S NOT JUST THE LINCOLN BEDROOM THAT'S UP FOR SALE, THE WHOLE FRICKIN WHITE HOUSE & EVERY AGENCY IT REGULATES IS UP FOR SALE.

Hellooooo, anybody home?
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drscm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 09:39 PM
Response to Original message
8. At least they are not sleeping in the Lincoln Bedroom...
they're raping us in the the Oval Office.
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