- Associated Press - Thursday, February 12, 2015

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - First-year Sen. Konni Burton says she won’t negotiate with taxpayer-funded lobbyists.

Burton, a Tea Party activist who won the seat vacated by unsuccessful Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis, has banned lobbyists who represent governmental entities from her office.

Burton’s chief of staff Art Martinez de Vara said Thursday that they have booted a half-dozen lobbyists upon determining they worked for a governmental entity.

He said all have been cooperative and work outside Burton’s district.

Martinez de Vara explained that, “It works against the interests of the taxpayers, and we’d much rather talk to the elected officials themselves.”

Republican Rep. Matt Shaheen has filed a bill that would eliminate the practice altogether. Burton says she may carry it in Senate, but Martinez de Vara said, “She’s not waiting for a law.”

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