Monday, March 21, 2016

Lobbying Shop That Works for Egypt Has Close Ties to Clintons

Alex Kane, AlterNet

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The Egyptian government employs a lobbying firm run by former members of Bill Clinton’s administration.

Hillary Clinton’s campaign website proclaims that as president, she would “continue her long-standing emphasis” on human rights.
But Clinton’s ties to a lobbying firm working for the government of Egypt, a country with an abusive human rights record, casts doubt on those words. ...
Since 2013, the Egyptian government has employed the Glover Park Group, a Washington firm run by former members of Bill Clinton’s administration, to lobby for it and to forge ties with congressional officials and media outlets, according to Foreign Agent Registration Act documents. ...
In October 2013, the Egyptian government tapped the Glover Park Group to “provide public diplomacy, strategic communications counsel and government relations services,” according to a FARA document. A review of FARA documents reveals that Egypt has paid $5.2 million to Glover Park since 2013. Opponents of the Egyptian regime criticized the amount of money going to the lobbying shop when the contract was disclosed. The Egyptian Foreign Ministry responded by claiming that a third party was picking up the tab, according to O’Dwyers, a publication that covers PR firms. But no FARA documents point to any third-party pay.
Glover Park Group sets up meetings between Egyptian officials and congressional officials who sit on key committees that wield influence on legislation concerning the country. The latest FARA disclosure form reveals an October 2015 email to Adam Yezerski, a staffer for the Senate Appropriations Committee. Another FARA document shows a February 2015 email to Dana Stroul, a staffer at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and a March 2015 email to the office of Senator Lindsay Graham, who sits on the Senate Appropriations Panel, which drafts legislation on foreign military aid. FARA documents also reveal extensive contacts with the news media and think tanks. ...

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