Barack Obama has long decried the corrupting influence of money in politics. As a candidate, he ran against lobbyists and the pay-for-play culture of Washington. As president, he has continued to hammer the theme, most recently in his impassioned attacks on the Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United v Federal Election Commission.
Given this, it’s a little surprising to learn that Obama has not only embraced the sordid money-driven culture of DC, but actually outdone his predecessors. An analysis by the American Foreign Service Association, for example, found that Obama has stuffed the diplomatic corps with more political appointees (i.e., cronies) than any president in the past 40 years. Only a year into the administration, close of half of the president’s biggest donors already have federal jobs.