What lobbyists do

The stereotypes Everyone thinks they know what a lobbyist is. It is perhaps the most stereotyped profession in the world: How voters see lobbyists           How legislators see lobbyists               How lobbyists see themselves             The reality First, a definition: Lobbying is the act of attempting...

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Sick of corruption in high places?

Lobby Arizona, North Carolina, and New Mexico have a Clean Elections law similar to Maine’s. Three other states have tried and abandoned the approach for various reasons (source). Campaign finance is only one factor affecting the competitiveness of an election. Competitiveness also depends on setting up legislative districts on an impartial basis, which we will discuss in another post. Tell us...

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What is a debt ceiling?

Except for one year during the term of President Andrew Jackson (1835-1836), the United States government has always been in debt. The Public Debt Acts of 1939 and 1941 mandated that Congress set an aggregate limit or “ceiling” on the amount of bonds that can be issued. Because the debt ceiling is an authority to pay debts already incurred, the number is largely a formality. It has nothing to do...

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