Kith & Kin Inc.
From OpenCongress Wiki
Kith & Kin Inc. is the name given for a new type of lobbyist in a February 14, 2004, New York Times editorial. This "growing subspecies in Washington's ever-flourishing influence industry consists of the relatives of members of Congress. They register as lobbyists free to work the Hill -- if not necessarily from within the family hearth, then near enough to count."
This area within government is "totally unregulated," with some "kin" working "on issues and bills that fall well within the portfolios of their elected family members," said the Times. 
"Hiring relatives of legislators seems especially prevalent among industries heavily regulated by the federal government, such as telecommunications, prescription drugs and mining," according to the Los Angeles Times. 
Legislators with Kin on the Payroll
The Associated Press reported April 13, 2005, a current list of legislators with family members on their congressional or campaign staffs: 
- Joseph Biden (D-DE): Sen. Biden's son R. Hunter Biden is a recent (2006) nominee for AMTRAK's oversight board and "most recently was a Presidential appointee at the U.S. Department of Commerce, where he served as the Executive Director for e-Commerce Policy Coordination under Transportation Secretary" Norman Y. Mineta. 
- Tim Bishop (D-NY): Rep. Bishop's "Daughter Molly was paid $46,995 as his 2004 campaign's finance director."
- Chris Cannon (R-Utah): Rep. Cannon's "Three college-age children worked on his campaign last year. Emily was paid $5,425, Jane $9,508 and Laura $17,766."
- Jim Costa (D-CA): Rep. Costa's "Cousin Ken Costa made about $45,000 for serving as a co-campaign manager last year."
- Lincoln Davis (D-TN): Rep. Davis's "Sister-in-law Sharon Davis has been his campaign treasurer since 1994, and daughter Libby Davis was his campaign coordinator in the last half of 2004. Libby Davis was paid about $2,334 a month; Sharon Davis was paid about $1,000 a month for bookkeeping last year."
- Tom DeLay (R-Texas): House Majority Leader's wife Christine DeLay and "daughter were paid more than $500,000 since 2001 for working for DeLay's campaign and political action committees."
- Louie Gohmert (R-Texas): Rep. Gohmert "employs his wife, Kathy, as his campaign manager. She was paid $21,791 over four months, including a $7,500 bonus last November."
- Jerry Lewis, (R-CA): Rep. Lewis's "Wife Arlene Willis serves as congressional chief of staff at a salary of nearly $111,000."
- Joseph I. Lieberman, (D-CT): Sen. Lieberman's "Son Matthew received about $34,000 and daughter Rebecca about $36,000 for working on the senator's 2004 presidential campaign."
- Bob Ney (R-OH): Rep. Ney's "Wife Elizabeth was paid about $1,730 a month during his 2004 campaign. She has worked as a campaign consultant for him since the 2001 election cycle."
- Dave Reichert, (R-Wash): Rep. Reichert's "Nephew Todd Reichert was paid $3,000 last year, plus several hundred dollars for mileage, for serving as driver."
- Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA): Rep. Rohrabacher's "Wife Rhonda Carmony makes $40,000 a year as his campaign manager."
- Fortney Stark (Pete Stark) (D-CA): Rep. Stark's "Wife Deborah earns $2,400 a month for serving as campaign consultant."
- Bart Stupak (D-Mich): Rep. Stupak's "Wife Laurie Stupak earned about $36,000 annually the past two years as the finance director for her husband's campaign."
The following was published in the October 16, 2006, USA TODAY article by Matt Kelley and Peter Eisler:
- Rep. David Hobson (R-OH): Top staffer for House Appropriation Subcommittee on Energy and Water, Kevin Cook's wife, lobbyist Juliet Pacquing, "collected $60,000 last year from Rhode Island manufacturer TPI Composites."
- Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-SC): Cousin, lobbyist William Clyburn Jr., "received $60,000 last year from two consulting firms to seek federal funding for the Augusta, Ga., airport."
- Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY): Chief of Staff Billy Piper's wife, lobbyist Holly Piper's "firm took in $220,000 last year from e-Cavern, a company seeking federal funding to build an underground facility to protect financial information in a Kentucky cavern" and "McConnell added $1.5 million to an appropriations bill for the project."
- Rep. C.W. Bill Young (R-FL): Daughter-in-law Cindy Young's "start-up lobbying firm ... took in $40,000 last year for helping Dynamic Defense Materials win federal funding to develop new body armor for the military."
The following list was published in the October 9, 2005, New York Times:
- Sen. Kent Conrad (D-ND): wife, Lucy Calautti, is a lobbyist for Major League Baseball.
- Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-ND): wife, Kim Dorge, is a lobbyist for the American Council for Life Insurance.
- Rep. William Delahunt (D-MA): daughter, Kara Delahunt, is a lobbyist for Powell Tate.
- Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL): son, Joshua Hastert, is a lobbyist for PodestaMattoon.
- Sen. Orrin G. Hatch (R-UT): son, Scott D. Hatch, is a lobbyist for Walker Martin & Hatch.
- Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN): son, David Lugar, is a lobbyist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
- Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK): wife, Catherine Stevens, is a lobbyist for Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw.
- Sen. George Voinovich (R-OH): "The son of Ohio Senator George Voinovich has teamed up with three public affairs veterans to open a new public affairs and lobbying agency. The firm, Voinovich, Needles, and Dalton (VND) will be based in Columbus, with offices in Akron, Jacksonville, Washington, DC, and Beijing. ... George F. Voinovich's partners in the venture are Thomas Needles, the founder of Ohio-based public affairs firm Statecraft; Jim Dalton, founder of Jacksonville's Dalton Agency; and Dalton Agency VP of PR Michael Munz." --April 16, 2004.
- Curt Weldon (R-PA) : daughter Karen Weldon "Among the 29-year-old Weldon's clients, the Los Angeles Times recently reported, are Dragomir and Bogoljub Karic, members of a wealthy Serbian family with close ties to famed ethnic-cleanser Slobodan Milosevic. Thanks to Rep. Weldon's efforts, the two brothers are given special attention by the State Department."—April 2004.
In February 2004, the Los Angeles Times compiled a list of "at least 17 senators and 11 House members with relatives who are paid lobbyists or consultants in government relations." 
- Tom Daschle: "Then there's Linda Daschle, wife of Senate majority leader, who represents clients in the airline industry. One of them was chosen by Congress to supply airports with bomb detection equipment. She says, 'when clients retain me, they don't retain me because I am Tom Daschle's wife.'" 
- Linda Hall Daschle "has been a pre-eminent aviation lobbyist for the past half-dozen years, although she maintains a self-imposed rule forbidding any contact with the South Dakota Democrat's staff or any Senate offices. The leader's daughter-in-law, Jill Daschle, also recently registered as a lobbyist, although Daschle aides say she abides by a similar no-Senate ban on lobbying." 
- Dennis Hastert, former Speaker of the House of Representatives: In September 2003, Paul Jacobs wrote an article for Common Sense in which he pointed to "Joshua Hastert, former record store owner. Has a pierced tongue, a goatee, and House Speaker Dennis Hastert as a father. He is also a lobbyist on Capitol Hill, but he says he doesn't trade on his famous name. ..." 
- Senator Orrin Hatch: Scott D. Hatch and Walker Martin & Hatch.
- Trent Lott (R-Miss): Chester Lott, "formerly a Domino's Pizza chain operator in Kentucky, took up lobbying, about the same time the son of Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.), Joshua, also began lobbying for a small firm." 
- "Lott's son didn't file any lobbying reports for the first half of 2003, leaving it unclear whether he continued the practice after the Mississippi Republican's fall from leadership. Hastert's son jumped to a bigger firm last year, Podesta Mattoon, where the Speaker's close adviser, Daniel Mattoon, is a name partner." 
- Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) "has had three sons and a son-in-law involved in firms that lobby the government or litigate for industries seeking government benefits. Hundreds of thousands of dollars have been paid for their services. This has made Mr. Reid, as co-chairman of the ethics committee, the focal point for the critics demanding that efforts be made to regulate such cozy practices. While insisting that he is above impropriety, Senator Reid has just sent an unexpected jolt through the Capitol's lobbyists by calling for a 'Senate-wide review of policies that relate to lobbying practices.'" 
- "Key Reid in late 2001 began running the day-to-day affairs of Lionel Sawyer and Collins' Washington lobbying office, with the part-time assistance of former Sen. Richard Bryan (D-Nev.). From Jan. 1, 2002, through the first half of 2003, Key Reid's firm collected at least $520,000 in lobbying revenue, according to a review of lobbying records filed with the Senate. He left the firm late last year  and returned to Las Vegas, where he is a counsel for the Greenspun Media Corp., whose top executive, Brian Greenspun, is a longtime supporter of Sen. Reid." 
- "Rory Reid and Steven Barringer, the son and son-in-law of Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.)." 
- Ted Stevens: "Senate Appropriations Chairman Ted Stevens (R-Alaska), also the President Pro Tempore of the chamber, has a son, Ben, who worked as a Washington lobbyist and is now a state legislator in Alaska and a part-time consultant with clients whose interests the Senator has supported. In addition, Stevens' wife, Catherine, does appropriations lobbying for her firm, Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw. Stevens is also weathering something of a media storm resulting from an L.A. Times investigative report that revealed the chairman's efforts to save a $450 million military contract for an Anchorage businessman who had previously made Sen. Stevens a partner in real estate deals that netted him at least $700,000." 
- "Ben Stevens and William H. Bittner, the son and brother-in-law of Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Ala.)" 
Ban on Family Lobbying
Inside South Dakota reported in January 2004 that then Minority Whip Harry Reid, the "top Senate Democrat on the Ethics Committee [was] pushing for a broad review of the chamber's lobbying rules, an overhaul that could eventually lead to a formal ban on Senators' family members lobbying their offices." Reid then said that he had "asked the panel's chairman, Sen. George Voinovich (R-Ohio), to consider the lobbying review and hinted that he may seek a top-to-bottom study of ethics rules." 
"It's unclear whether the review Reid is pushing for would deal with the murky nature of outside income and investments that Senators have, some of which might not specifically deal with lobbying. Voinovich and Reid would also have to come up with a specific definition for a lobbyist during their review. Some family members work in government relations or consulting, in ways that require Senate assistance but don't require actually lobbying registration." 
"Gary Ruskin, director of the Congressional Accountability Project, noted that any ban on lobbying contacts by family members would have to be comprehensive, applying not only to the personal Senate offices but also to the committees where Senators serve." 
"Historically, reports of lobbying date to the very first Congress: Continental Army veterans hired someone to buttonhole solons for benefits, while New York merchants employed 'treats, dinners, attentions' to delay a tariff bill. Who's to say what's good or bad about lobbying Congress? Only Congress itself, if it can ever muster the courage." 
- Bush administration cronyism and incompetence
- defense contractors
- federal contractors
- Government-industry revolving door
- Homeland Security contractors
- military-industrial complex
- pharmaceutical industry
- prison-industrial complex
- U.S. prescription drug system
- war profiteering
- Sheldon Rampton and John Stauber, Swallowing Anything: The Hype Behind Alternative Remedies, PR Watch, Third Quarter, 1997: "Parry & Romani is headed by Thomas Parry, who, like Keven McGuiness, is a former aide to Orrin Hatch. 'The two have a mutually beneficial relationship,' reports Washingtonian magazine. 'Hatch refers Utah companies to Parry, Parry raises money for Hatch, Parry lobbies Hatch, the clients often gain.' ... The company's other principal, Romano Romani, served on the staff of Arizona Congressman Dennis DeConcini until DeConcini's embarrassment in the Charles Keating savings-and-loan scandal prompted him to decline seeking reelection. Now their roles are reversed, with DeConcini working as a lobbyist on the payroll of Parry & Romani. ... The company also conveniently employs Scott Hatch, Orrin's son, who lobbies on behalf of clients such as the National Medical Device Coalition, the Non-Prescription Drug Manufacturers Association, and Herbalife International, a multilevel sales company whose controversial products include diet aids laced with diuretics, laxatives and caffeine. Herbalife products have drawn dozens of citations for safety and regulatory violations in both the United States and Canada."
- Chuck Neubauer, Judy Pasternak and Richard T. Cooper, A Washington Bouquet: Hire A Lawmaker's Kid. Stiffer rules are making it harder to direct cash to a congressman. But you can still put his family on the payroll, Los Angeles Times, June 22, 2003: "Two years ago, when regional phone companies wanted Congress to make it easier for them to compete in the high-speed Internet market, they did what special interests usually do with billions of dollars at stake: They amassed an army of experienced lobbyists. ... But one of the so-called Baby Bells didn't stop there. BellSouth also hired a pair of lobbyists distinguished by their family trees -- John Breaux, Jr. and Chester T. Lott, Jr.. ... The son of another heavy hitter on telecommunications, Rep. W.J. "Billy" Tauzin (R-La.), was already on the BellSouth payroll, working in community relations. ... While their sons have been getting paid by BellSouth, Sen. Breaux and Rep. Tauzin have sponsored bills to loosen federal restrictions on Baby Bells that want to compete with cable companies in the high-speed Internet market. They didn't prevail on Capitol Hill, so the fathers are now pressing the Federal Communications Commission to lift those restrictions. Sen. Lott has not taken a position on the issue. ... Sen. Daschle's daughter-in-law, Jill Gimmel Daschle, registered as a federal lobbyist in May. She had planned to lobby the Senate but decided against it on Friday, an aide to the senator said. ... And California Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer's son Doug works for a lobbying firm representing clients that have sought her help in Congress on tribal and airport issues." Article contains extensive information on "family" lobbyists.
- Hamilton Nolan, "Ohio Senator's son leads new public affairs firm," PRWeek.com, April 16, 2004.
- "Lawmakers With Relatives on Payroll," Associated Press, April 13, 2005.
- Jack Hitt, "The Diddly Awards. News: The 'that's no lobbyist, that's my wife!' award for familial connections," Mother Jones, May/June 2006.
- Matt Kelley and Peter Eisler, "Relatives have 'inside track' in lobbying for tax dollars," USA TODAY, October 16, 2006.