Congress fer sale...
$286,000 gets you a whole committee.
Rep. Paul Kanjorski, a Pennsylvania Democrat who heads the House Financial Services subcommittee that pressed for the accounting change, received $18,500 from coalition members in the first quarter, the second-highest total among committee members, according to Federal Election Commission records. Over the past two years, Mr. Kanjorski received $704,000 in contributions from banking and insurance firms, the third-highest total among members of Congress, according to the FEC and the Center for Responsive Politics.
The American Bankers Association, a trade group, acknowledges that it exerted pressure to change the rules. The ABA was the biggest donor to the campaign funds of committee members in the weeks before the hearing. It gave a total of $74,500 to 33 members of the committee in the first quarter, according to the Journal analysis of public filings. An ABA spokesman says that is its normal level of support for lawmakers, and that the initiative was part of a broader effort to change accounting rules.
"We worked that hearing," says ABA President Edward Yingling.