Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Former Railroad Lobbyist, Senator John Thune, Slips $3.5 Billion Dollar Railroad Industry Loan Into Bill

Senator John Thune(R-SD) has proven how the revolving door works in Washington. Thune was a former Congressman, then turned lobbyist for for 18 months for Dakota, Minnesota & Eastern Railroad. Now as U.S. Senator, Thune slips in a $3.5 billion dollar loan in a bill for a railroad project that will mainly benefit D,M&E, coal mines and power company interests as the loan will fund a 880 mile railroad project linking power companies who use coal to generate electricity to coalmines in Wyoming.

It could be argued that the public will derive some benefit by the coal mine to pwer plant railroad project. But at the same time, the role of a former employee of a company as a lobbyist then writing expensive legislation to benefit that industry is an issue of questionable revolving door politics.

Democratic Senator Mark Dayton(D-MN) is not amused by all of this, and intends to write a new bill to tighten the rules involving this revolving door lobbyist and legislator brand of politics that costs the public so much money in high budget pork projects.


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