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Watchdog Group Criticizes In-Session Fundraising Events

Posted: 18 July, 2013

LINCOLN (AP) - A political watchdog group is criticizing private fundraising events held for Nebraska lawmakers while the Legislature is in session. Common Cause Nebraska released a report Wednesday that identified 19 state lawmakers who participated in breakfast, lunch and dinner events sponsored by lobbyists this year. State law allows lobbyists to deliver checks from their clients during the meals. As long as the amount is below $250, the contribution can be reported as cash, and the donor can become impossible to identify. The group estimates that one event can generate up to $7,000 for an incumbent lawmaker. Common Cause spokesman Jack Gould says Nebraska should join 29 other states that have banned in-session fundraisers, or at least lower the disclosure requirement to $100. Included on the list of lawmakers is Hoskins Senator Dave Bloomfield.

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