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January 26, 2020

Note: Justice Talking's grant funding expired in 2008 and the project has been closed. This website is an archive of the entire run of Justice Talking shows through June 30, 2008.
It is no longer being maintained. We apologize for any stale or broken links.
Featured Program

Illustration by: Gary L. Gehman
Influencing the Way "Influence" is Peddled?
Last Featured: 5/1/2006

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Note: Justice Talking ceased production on June 30 of 2008. Link information on this site is not maintained and is provided for historical interest only. Although correct when posted, The Annenberg Public Policy Center makes no claim as the the accuracy or continued availability of any third party web links found on this site.

The recent indictments of former House Majority Leader Tom Delay and the plea deal by former Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff have sent shock waves through Washington, D.C. and opened to public scrutiny campaign donations, junkets to fancy resorts and other gifts from lobbyists. Reforms aimed at the corrupting influence of money on politics are high on the Congressional agenda and on this term’s Supreme Court docket. Join us this week when Justice Talking revisits the issue of cash and candidates and asks whether reforms are necessary to influence how "influence" is peddled.

Interview with Jeff Birnbaum
Host Margot Adler speaks with journalist Jeff Birnbaum about political fundraising and the influence of lobbyists in Washington.

Jeffrey Birnbaum writes the column "K Street Confidential" and feature stories for the Washington Post. Previously, Birnbaum served as chief managing editor of Fortune magazine’s Washington, D.C. bureau, where he specialized in covering the intersection of government and business with an emphasis on politics. Birnbaum is the author of four books, the most recent being The Money Men: The Real Story of Fundraising’s Influence on Political Power in America.

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Report from Alabama
Tanya Ott reports on lobbying in Alabama, where reformers have been unable to pass a bill that would require more disclosure of how much money lobbyists spend on legislators.

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Debate on the Issue
Citizens' advocate Melanie Sloan and lobbyists' lobbyist Paul Miller debate the pervasiveness and power of political lobbying in American government.

Melanie Sloan is the executive director of Citizens for Responsibility & Ethics in Washington. Formerly, Ms. Sloan served as an assistant United States attorney in the District of Columbia, where, from 1998 - early 2003, she successfully tried cases before dozens of judges and juries. Ms. Sloan was counsel for the Crime Subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee, working for then Representative Charles Schumer. There, she drafted portions of the 1994 Crime Bill, including the Violence Against Women Act, and worked on issues including the death penalty, mandatory minimum sentencing, and habeas corpus court stripping bills.

Paul Miller is the president of the American League of Lobbyists. He works for Miller/Wenhold Capitol Strategies, a lobbying firm in Fairfax, VA. He served as an aide to Les Aspin former U.S. Congressman and secretary of defense under President Clinton. He has lobbied on behalf of the National Funeral Directors Association, the Office Furniture Dealers Alliance, among other private firms and associations. He is also the co-founder of the Hoops for Hope charity basketball event that pits members of Congress vs. lobbyists each year in an effort to raise money for children's charities in the Washington, D.C. area.

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Interview ith Matthew Continetti
Host Margot Adler speaks with author Matthew Continetti about his recent book.

Matthew Continetti is the author of The K Street Gang. He graduated from Columbia University in May 2003. While at Columbia he was a productive journalist, writing for the Columbia Spectator and ISI's magazine, CAMPUS. He is currently a CN fellow and editorial assistant at the Weekly Standard.

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Commentary by James Copple

James Copple is a senior policy analyst at the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation. Mr. Copple is responsible for developing an international initiative to address problem drinking and underage alcohol consumption. Prior to coming to PIRE, Mr. Copple served as the the vice president for public policy and program development for the National Crime Prevention Council where he coordinated the passage of the Crime-Free Rural State Grant Initiative in the reauthorization of the Department of Justice. Mr. Copple is a highly regarded speaker and writer in the substance abuse, mental health and violence prevention field.

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Justice Talking’s last broadcast & podcast was June 30, 2008.
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