11 percent of Obama's top staff are former lobbyists

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A non-partisan analysis of individuals appointed or nominated to the Obama administration revealed roughly 11 percent of those officials have been registered lobbyists.

By cross-checking the 267 names of senior Obama administration officials against lobbyist records, National Journal found 30 individuals who have lobbied over the past five years.

Obama once promised if he was elected president “lobbyists won’t find a job in my White House.” Government watchdogs questioned this promise when William Lynn was brought on to serve as the Deputy Secretary of Defense, a former lobbyist for Raytheon. The White House insisted Lynn was “uniquely qualified for the position.”

Only a handful of the 30 lobbyist-turned-officials named by the National Journal appear to be serving the government in areas that could overlap with their previous lobbying duties, like Lynn.

These people include Mark Patterson, chief of staff to Treasury Secretary. He previously lobbied for Goldman Sachs. Director of the White House Office of Government Affairs Cecilia Munoz has lobbied for the National Council of La Raza, an immigration advocacy group. Patricia Gaspard, director of the White House Office of Political Affairs is a former lobbyist for the Service Employees International Union.

The others, like Deputy National Security Advisor Thomas Donilon, are working in different areas. He is a former lobbyist for Fannie Mae.

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About the Author
Amanda Carpenter

Amanda Carpenter

Amanda Carpenter writes the daily "Hot Button" column for The Washington Times. She was formerly a national political reporter for Townhall.com, the leading online publication for news, opinion and talk. Prior to that, she was a reporter for Human Events. Ms. Carpenter has made numerous media appearances that include segments on the Fox News, CNN, MSNBC, CNBC, BBC and other ...

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