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Ds and Rs Fight Over Who Raises Dirtier Dough

The Republican and Democratic House fundraising and recruiting entities are sparring over which group, the National Republican Congressional Committee or the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, raises dirtier money. (A snippet of their schoolyard fight: "You do!" "No, you do!" Thwack!)

In light of Barack Obama's mandate that his campaign and the Democratic National Committee cease taking contributions from lobbyists, the nearly bankrupt NRCC is slamming the DCCC for continuing the practice. The NRCC, which, yes, also readily accepts donations from lobbyists,
is also crying foul over Obama lending his name to help House Democrats raise money from those evil lobbyists he decries.

"It is the height of hypocrisy for Barack Obama to solicit campaign contributions on behalf of the very same campaign committee that opposes his position of refusing lobbyist donations," NRCC spokesman Ken Spain says. "It appears that Democrats want to have it both ways; they want to run on a platform of so-called 'change' while simultaneously shaking down Washington lobbyists before they bash them on the campaign trail."

Harsh. And two can play that game.

Spain's counterpart at the DCCC, Doug Thornell, had this to say in response: "Republican hypocrisy would be laughable if it wasn't so pathetic. House Democrats are still fumigating the stench left over from Jack Abramoff, the K Street Project and the old corrupt GOP majority." He lauded Democrats for implementing "historic ethics and lobbying reforms" and "full disclosure of bundled contributions" and attacked NRCC Chairman Tom Cole (R-Okla.).

On this playground, where money matters more than muscle, the NRCC is looking pretty scrawny. The NRCC had a paltry $6.7 million cash on hand compared to the DCCC's $45 million at the end of the last filing period. Which may be why Cole, a Chickasaw Native American, earned this new nickname in GOP leadership offices: Raises No Money.

Though we hear no one has dared call Cole "Raises No Money" to his face. The congressman's real Indian name, according to a spokeswoman, is Anumpa shali, which means The Ambassador.

By Mary Ann Akers  |  June 11, 2008; 5:19 PM ET
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