John Edwards Promises to "Shut Out" Trial Lawyers

John Edwards was on ABC's This Week with George Stephanopoulos this morning. The money quote:

STEPHANOPOULOS: You've made such an issue on lobbyists, and we've talked about this in the past. But I have to press this a little bit. You're very careful. You say no corporate lobbyists in the White House, no lobbyists for foreign governments in the White House. Some of your biggest contributors are trial lawyers, and the Association of Trial Lawyers for America is the sixth largest lobbying group in the country, $6 million spent on lobbying. Six of your top fund-raisers are on the executive committee of that organization. Eighteen of your top fund-raisers are on their board of governors.
Will they be barred from the White House as well?
STEPHANOPOULOS: Even though they have given you money? (CROSSTALK)
EDWARDS: There will be no lobbyist who's worked for the trial lawyers, no lobbyist who's worked for big corporations that will be working in my White House, period.

Is he saying it's okay to take the trial lawyers' money so long as after the election he doesn't hire their organization's lobbyists to work in the White House? Is that really the the issue?

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    I think he's saying... (none / 0) (#1)
    by mattd on Sun Jan 06, 2008 at 12:39:25 PM EST
    ...that he won't hire any former federal lobbyists to work in his White House, whether they contributed to his campaign or not.  Given that Edwards' entire belief system seems built upon his experiences as a trial lawyer, fighting for the powerless (as he would put it), I don't think other trial lawyers are afraid he'll forget those experiences if he moves into the White House.

    His stated plan for curbing lobbyist influence is on his Web site here.

    He didn't exclude hiring his fund raisers (none / 0) (#2)
    by oculus on Sun Jan 06, 2008 at 12:48:46 PM EST
    unless the fund raiser is also a federal lobbyist.  Lots of potential admin. members left.

    What he's saying is-.. anything that (none / 0) (#3)
    by MarkL on Sun Jan 06, 2008 at 01:53:19 PM EST
    the situation requires, just as he always does

    Phony (none / 0) (#4)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Sun Jan 06, 2008 at 03:15:46 PM EST

    The guy is as phony as a three dollar bill.  We have a constitutional right to petition the government to redress grievances.  That's what lobbying is.

    The lobbyist has become a scapegoat for pols that need an excuse for the unpopular parts of the legislation they vote into law.  "Its not my fault its those !@#$% lobbyists."

    John Edwards is the real thing! (none / 0) (#5)
    by Evergreen on Sun Jan 06, 2008 at 06:08:20 PM EST
    Nothing phony about John Edwards.  If there were anything phony I can guarantee that his wife, Elizabeth, would have left long ago.

    Look Edwards has his finger squarely on the problem that is causing America to loose her democracy.   Abdul #3 is twisting those facts when he confuses lobbying by people vs Corporate influence and purchase of our government.  Multinational Corporations are NOT American ciitizens and should NOT be writing our legislation.  Their lobbyists should not have more influence over our politicians than we the people do.  They should not be the ones donating to our politicians.  (We seriously need campaign finance reform here)   Currently corporate power (greed gone amuck exponentially) is  calling the shots and leading us down the path to facsist corporatocracy, enabled by our very own corporate deregulated media.

    Edwards is trying to reinstate our democracy plain and simple.  And if you think that is phony I can't help you.  

    He is totally phony and a hipocrite! (none / 0) (#6)
    by BRS on Sun Jan 06, 2008 at 11:00:50 PM EST
    His two biggest supporters are among the top 6 lobbyist in the country - - the Trial Lawyers Association and Organized Labor. Trial Lawyers typically get 35 to 50% of all settlements. I guess he is in it for the little guy as he says? The country needs change not this B.S.