Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Max Baucus is a Corrupt Sack of Shit

Well done to the New York Times for going to great lengths to point this out:

WASHINGTON — Restaurant chains like McDonald’s want to keep their lucrative tax credit for hiring veterans. Altria, the tobacco giant, wants to cut the corporate tax rate. And Sapphire Energy, a small alternative energy company, is determined to protect a tax incentive it believes could turn algae into a popular motor fuel.

To make their case as Congress prepares to debate a rewrite of the nation’s tax code, this diverse set of businesses has at least one strategy in common: they have retained firms that employ lobbyists who are former aides to Max Baucus, the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, which will have a crucial role in shaping any legislation.

No other lawmaker on Capitol Hill has such a sizable constellation of former aides working as tax lobbyists, representing blue-chip clients that include telecommunications businesses, oil companies, retailers and financial firms, according to an analysis by LegiStorm, an online database that tracks Congressional staff members and lobbying. At least 28 aides who have worked for Mr. Baucus, Democrat of Montana, since he became the committee chairman in 2001 have lobbied on tax issues during the Obama administration — more than any other current member of Congress, according to the analysis of lobbying filings performed for The New York Times.

“K Street is literally littered with former Baucus staffers,” said Jade West, an executive at a wholesalers’ trade association that relies on a former finance panel aide, Mary Burke Baker. “It opens doors that allow you to make the case.”

Like Ms. Baker, many of those lobbyists have already saved their clients millions — in some cases, billions — of dollars after Mr. Baucus backed their requests to extend certain corporate tax perks, provisions that were adopted as part of the so-called fiscal cliff legislation in January. Baucus aides who later became lobbyists helped financial firms save $11.2 billion in tax deferments and helped secure a $222 million tax benefit that is shared with the liquor industry.
Those who remember the Healthcare bill remember that Max Baucus carried the water for the insurance industry (and the Obama Administration) in making the bill much, much worse. Only Baucus didn't always oppose elements of the house bill, he's simply so corrupt he can't help himself. When discussions about healthcare began, Baucus released a white paper that included a public option, and other improvements on the bill. That was until the health insurance industry dumped over 2 million dollars into his campaign, making him suddenly have a change of heart over these reforms. Rahm Emanuel then used him to craft the White House's preferred bill with no public option (among other things), and that was basically the bill that ended up becoming law.

Ahhh memories.

Max Baucus is the worst. He also represents a state with a million people, yet has the same power as representatives of states with 30 million. Probably more, based on his committee position. Abolish the Senate, if for no other reason than it breeds and empowers the Max Baucuses of the world.

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