One who intends to leave others better off for his having existed.

1/16/12

"Donors Gave as Santorum Won Earmarks"

"...In just one piece of legislation, the defense appropriations bill for the 2006 fiscal year, Mr. Santorum helped secure $124 million in federal financing for 54 earmarks...

In that year’s election cycle, Mr. Santorum’s Senate campaign committee and his “leadership PAC” took in more than $200,000 in contributions from people associated with the companies that benefited or their lobbyists...

...Mr. Santorum helped secure more than $1 billion in earmarks during his Senate career...

...In some cases, while representatives from the companies that got a grant did not donate to Mr. Santorum, their lobbyists did.

Vision Technologies, a company based in Arkansas with a plant in Pennsylvania, hired IKON Public Affairs in 2004 to help it pursue federal money, paying the lobbyists $100,000 over the next two years.

The company received a $3 million federal grant in the defense appropriations bill to develop a video system to monitor machinery aboard gas turbine ships. Two of the lobbyists on the account, Craig Snyder and Peter Grollman, contributed nearly $9,000 total to Mr. Santorum’s leadership PAC and his campaign committee, mostly in 2005.

And the lobbying firm Blank Rome, Mr. Santorum’s largest single source of contributions during the 2006 election cycle — the firm’s executives gave more than $100,000 to his campaign — had several clients who got help from Mr. Santorum with earmarks and other legislation.

“This is the thing about earmarks,” said Ryan Alexander, the president of Taxpayers for Common Sense. “It’s not that every project is horrible. It’s not that it’s inappropriate for lawmakers to garner resources for their constituents.

“The problem is it looks like it is pay-to-play. It looks like: ‘You want to get an earmark? You make a contribution.’ ”

NYT

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