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Jim McElhatton

Jim McElhatton no longer works for The Washington Times.

Articles by Jim McElhatton

Lobbyists bend ears on issues in swanky settings

The presidential nominating conventions are the Super Bowls of schmooze for corporations, labor unions and interest groups that have a lot at stake in the nation's capital. Published August 27, 2008

Lobby ties counter Biden's 'outsider' label

Obama/Biden '08 is being sold as the "outsider" ticket of the year, but Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr.'s 35-year career in the Senate may make that a difficult sell. One need look no further than his lobbyist son and his law firm to see why. Published August 26, 2008

Anti-lobbyist rhetoric lost among festivities

Under Sen. Barack Obama's self-imposed ban on accepting money from federal lobbyists, Michael Dino isn't allowed to give a dime to the Democrat's presidential campaign. Neither could Steve Farber. Published August 26, 2008

Special interests swarm DNC agendas

From a $5,000 "kick-off the convention" golf outing to VIP credentials being handed out for $1 million "Presidential Sponsors," corporate and special interest money is flowing into Denver this week right along with the politicians. Published August 26, 2008

Case dropped after inmate waits 4 years for trial

Federal prosecutors have dropped all charges against a D.C. man who has spent four years in jail awaiting trial in a triple shooting involving an off-duty Metropolitan Police Department officer. Published August 20, 2008

McCain, Obama pushed pet projects in letters

EXCLUSIVE -- More than a year before launching his White House campaign, Sen. John McCain wrote a letter urging the Bush administration to set aside tens of millions of dollars to build a new port of entry in Arizona to allow more trucks to cross the U.S.-Mexico border. Published August 15, 2008

Watchdogs fault candidates

Sen. John McCain is more open than his Democratic rival about revealing information on his top fundraisers, but neither he nor Sen. Barack Obama will say precisely how much money each of those supporters rake in, a coalition of campaign finance watchdog groups said Wednesday. Published July 31, 2008

D.C. case cited in sentencing challenge

The U.S. Supreme Court is being asked to revisit whether judges should give defendants tougher sentences based on conduct that jurors rejected as a basis for conviction. Published July 30, 2008

Kuwait helps pay detainees' legal bills

Three U.S. law firms and a public relations company have received millions of dollars from a Middle Eastern organization partly financed by the Kuwaiti government to work for families of Kuwaitis detained at Guantanamo Bay. Published July 25, 2008

Drug-trafficking suspect released after acquittal

A defendant in a major Colombian drug-trafficking investigation has been set free after a federal jury rejected charges that he conspired with reputed drug lord "Don" Pablo Rayo-Montano and his associates to ship tons of cocaine into the United States. Published July 24, 2008

Ex-GOP official's home targeted

Federal authorities are seeking to claim the Bethesda home of a former treasurer of the National Republican Congressional Committee, saying an ongoing investigation uncovered evidence he took more than a half-million dollars in political money and spent much of it on home improvement projects. Published July 20, 2008

Lockheed: U.S. must pay for rocket-test cleanup

One of the nation's largest federal defense contractors says the U.S. government should pay the cleanup costs - likely in the tens of millions of dollars or more - from pollutants leaked during the production and testing of U.S. military and space rockets. Published July 7, 2008

Countrywide's PAC closing amid inquiries

The political arm of embattled Countrywide Financial Corp., which has donated more than a half-million dollars to candidates and political groups since 2005, is shutting down amid a corporate buyout and ongoing inquiries into whether lawmakers got sweetheart deals from the California-based subprime lender. Published July 2, 2008

'Relevant conduct' can add to sentences

Steven Kalar, senior litigator in the Northern District of California's Office of Federal Public Defender, tells his clients facing big conspiracy cases to keep in mind the movie "Raiders of the Lost Ark." Published June 29, 2008

Gun ruling galvanizes groups

Within minutes of the Supreme Court ruling overturning D.C.'s gun ban, NRA leaders began work on legal challenges against gun restrictions in Chicago and San Francisco. Published June 27, 2008

Lawmakers shun lender Countrywide

Members of Congress scrambled to distance themselves Wednesday from subprime lender Countrywide Financial Corp. amid calls for an ethics probe and House investigation into whether some lawmakers got sweetheart loan deals through the company's chief executive. Published June 19, 2008

GOP hits another Obama adviser

Republicans, smelling the success of knocking out the head of Sen. Barack Obama's vice-presidential search committee Wednesday, renewed efforts to ensnare another top adviser to the Democratic presidential candidate with the exploits of his Washington-insider past. Published June 13, 2008

Adviser for VP search resigns

Sen. Barack Obama, who has lambasted runaway corporate salaries on the presidential campaign trail, accepted the resignation Wednesday of a prominent adviser who has had some big Wall Street paydays of his own lately. Published June 12, 2008