Winners and Losers: Coups, Real and Imagined
"The White House has confirmed that Chelsea Clinton has a boyfriend. Her parents are being very old-fashioned, saying no sleep-over dates until the young man comes up with $100,000." Bill Maher, on Politically Incorrect
Lobbying: The Latest Skinny on Washington's Skivvies War
(TIME, July 28) -- It's the bikini line vs. the bottom line. It's the underpinnings of an inside-the-Beltway underwear war. It's Hanes vs. Fruit of the Loom, a high-stakes trade battle over who's going to wear the underpants in the family. At issue: a $200 million provision attached to the budget bill that would allow briefs and other goods manufactured in the Caribbean to enter the U.S. at dramatically lower tariffs. Fearing that the provision would help competitors munch into its market, Fruit of the Loom has hired former Senate majority leader turned lobbyist Bob Dole to oppose the measure. Cheerleading for Hanes' parent, Sara Lee Corp., and other U.S. apparel makers with major Caribbean interests, is former Reagan aide Ken Duberstein. Also coming out of the closet on this issue is President Clinton, a close friend of Sara Lee Corp. CEO and Democratic fund-raising bigwig John Bryan. Clinton, long in favor of the provision, phoned Senate majority leader Trent Lott late last week to make clear his support for the bill. At the moment, most of the honorable gentlemen seem to prefer Hanes.
By Adam Zagorin
Fund-Raising Hearings: Who's Peddling Influence to Whom?
Before Fred Thompson became a celebrity in his biggest role ever--a hard-nosed U.S. Senator rooting out foreign influences in American politics--he was just a little ol' lawyer with Arent Fox, a D.C. firm that at the time did legal and lobbying work for several foreign governments and various overseas corporations. According to documents Thompson and Arent Fox filed with the Department of Justice, Thompson's duties included lobbying for Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, who hired Arent Fox in October 1991 shortly after his government was overthrown by a military coup. As the firm lobbied U.S. officials to bolster support for Aristide's return to power, Thompson pitched in by calling John Sununu, chief of staff for the Bush White House, to discuss Aristide's case. Tom Daffron, Thompson's chief of staff, says there is absolutely, totally, nothing similar between foreign governments seeking to influence U.S. policy by hiring a lobbyist and foreign governments seeking to influence U.S. policy by giving campaign contributions. "One's legal, and the other is illegal," he explains.
By Gabriel Snyder
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