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Clinton Bundler Joins Obama Camp

By Matthew Mosk
It's hard enough being a loyal supporter of Hillary Clinton who has gamely tried to move past defeat and jump aboard Barack Obama's presidential team.

But as a man who has spent years doing federal lobbying, Weldon Latham has also had to accept that the candidate he is now strongly supporting spent the past 18 months helping turn people in his line of work into pariahs.

Latham raised nearly half a million dollars for Clinton and is now preparing to do the same for Obama. He has closed up the lobbying portion of his Washington, D.C., law practice, so he is not falling afoul of the Obama campaign prohibition on lobbyist-bundlers. But he said this morning he's not sure the all-out ban is exactly the right approach.

"Sen. Obama's desire to clean up politics is heartfelt," Latham said. "He's really determined to make changes and I admire that. Over time, though, I believe he will see the need to make some modifications to his approach."

Latham said he has trouble understanding why a friend of his who lobbies for the Girl Scouts needs to fall under the Obama campaign prohibition on political giving. And he notes that when he was lobbying for minority businesses, he helped change policies during the Clinton administration in ways he's certain the Illinois senator would support.

Kirk Wagar, an Obama fundraiser from Florida, said he believes the campaign opted for a broad brush approach because it would be too hard to try to sort out which lobbyists were acceptable and which were trouble.

By Web Politics Editor  |  August 26, 2008; 2:11 PM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama , Hillary Rodham Clinton , The Green Zone  
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Next: Rendell Compares Obama to Adlai Stevenson


ha ha finally McCain is getting a chance to defeat Os(b)ama Bi-nla-den that too in our country. What a choice by OB? Is he supporting USA or Taliban by completing the name of other OB by choosing Biden. So the voilent OB would be very happy as for the firt time in the our history we will be voting for Os(b)ama Bi(nla)den.

Posted by: rosie | August 27, 2008 12:42 AM | Report abuse

What a breath of fresh air will be coming to Washington, DC when the Obama train arrives in the White House. Oh, for sure, he is not perfect. However, he recognizes that to maintain integrity of character, one must resist undue influence. This has proven to be very difficult as of late, so the pendulum must be swung way back against these forces. Corruption scandals have nearly become the norm and integrity in service the exception. What a travesty and I am so proud of the Democratic Party for finally trying to address this by nominating a man who is committed to a higher moral ground.

I thank God for Barack Obama, and Joseph Biden. May they help to restore honor to the White House and encourage all who would serve to honor the highest code of ethics, which entitles our representatives to be called "the Honorable".

Posted by: Andrew L - Des Moines | August 26, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

Is it in any way perceived as problematic for the Obama message that Joe Biden's son, Hunter, is a lobbyist?

Posted by: ezr1 | August 26, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Of course, Obama wouldn't have to sort anything out, or even need "bundlers" after Thursday, had he not reneged on his promise to "aggressively pursue an agreement on public financing" ; )

Posted by: JakeD | August 26, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse


After tonight, Matt, Latham will be working for his old boss.

Posted by: scrivener | August 26, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse


After tonight, Dan, Latham will be working for his old boss.

Posted by: scrivener | August 26, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

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